'I Can't Wait Til You're Legal': Anomaly London Takes On Tobacco Companies
Anomaly London's joint executive creative directors, Oli Beale and Alex Holder, have launched a new campaigning platform called Us v Them, inviting the world's creative community to join them in tackling major social issues.
Their first target is big tobacco. Mr. Beale and Ms. Holder have created a disturbing film to highlight the industry's reliance on constantly recruiting new generations of smokers. Called "I Can't Wait 'Til You're Legal," the video is designed to be sent to -- and shared by -- teenagers on their 14th birthdays.
It features a middle-aged businessman speaking in a lascivious tone: "Hello little one, you're growing up so fast aren't you? Jesus… I can't wait 'til you're legal. I think about it all day at work. I want you so much. And on this day, in a few years, you'll be ready." He then sings "Happy Birthday."
The viewer assumes he is talking about sex, but the words, "Tobacco companies really want you to start smoking. Surely that's one more reason not to," come up on the screen, revealing at the last minute that the subject of the film is smoking.
Mr. Beale said in a statement, "The creative industry's stock-in-trade is bringing about behavior change. If we use those skills for good, we can make a valuable contribution to addressing some major social issues. With Us v Them we want to start a movement, one that engages and galvanizes as much of the creative community as possible to fight bad guys. I don't mind if we're seen as idealists or naïve, this is our way of at least trying to make a difference."
The plan is to recruit like-minded creatives, and host meetings every few months, with a view to identifying future targets and causes that the group feels passionate about.
Ms. Holder said in a statement, "The anti-tobacco campaign is a pilot. If it goes well, over the course of 2015 Us v Them will be calling out other bad guys in business, politics and society. It's very, very exciting."
Mr. Beale and Ms. Holder joined Anomaly London from Mother in December 2013. They have a history of crusading work, and produced the "Make Them Pay" campaign for Elle magazine, encouraging women to ask men doing the same job how much they earn, which racked up 83 million views in three weeks. They are best known for their work on the Kaiser Chiefs' album, "The Future is Medieval," which won two Cannes Cyber Lions in 2012.