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Marketer Will Not Run 'Wardrobe Malfunction' Super Bowl Spot

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CHICAGO ( -- In an effort to avoid controversy, Anheuser-Busch won't run a Super Bowl spot for Bud Light showing a fictitious comical prelude to Janet Jackson's infamous "wardrobe malfunction."
This is the spoof ad that Budweiser has killed from its Super Bowl airing list.

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The beer marketing giant had flirted with running the Bud Light spot, created by Omnicom Group's DDB Worldwide, New York. It decided not to after discussions with the Fox network, which is broadcasting the Super Bowl, and the National Football League.

Jackson's dress
The spot is set backstage at last year's Super Bowl before the halftime show. A guy has trouble opening a bottle of Bud Light. To get a better grip he grabs Ms. Jackson's dress, which is hanging over a chair. In the process he damages the dress and does a poor job of repairing it -- with memorable results.

"We mutually agreed it would probably be best not to run it," said Bob Lachky, Anheuser-Busch vice president for brand management and director of global brand creative. He noted the ad tested well.

Indeed, Anheuser-Busch had sparked controversy of its own in last year's game with a commercials that featured a flatulent horse and a crotch-biting dog.

Ten 30-second spots
Anheuser-Busch, which will be running 10 30-second spots on the game this year, will be using the Super Bowl to accomplish goals besides flogging Budweiser and Bud Light. The brewer will introduce Budweiser Select, which will be rolled out nationally Feb. 21, in a spot from Omnicom's TBWA/Chiat/Day, Playa del Rey, Calif.

It's also looking at running work for the small but fast-growing Michelob Amber

Photo: AP
Janet Jackson on stage seconds after she bared her breast during last year's Super Bowl.
Bock from DDB, New York.

For Bud Light, the brewer is focused on getting the brand's advertising back on the traditional strategy of showing people going to great lengths to get the beer. Anheuser-Busch deviated from that last year to attack Miller Brewing Co.'s Miller Lite, which had been making inroads by taking shots at Bud Light.

While Anheuser-Busch has picked some ads to run already, it's still weighing others.

Cedric the Entertainer
Close to a lock is a spot showing Cedric the Entertainer fantasizing about being on a desert island with two beautiful women and an endless supply of Bud Light. It was created by DDB, Chicago.

Other work from DDB, Chicago, is in contention. One spot shows a skydiver trying to encourage a reluctant jumper by throwing Bud Light out of the plane.

Other work from the shop -- and directed by a former DDB group creative director, John Immesoete, who left to strike out on his own last year -- shows a martial arts instructor trying to take Bud Light from an old woman in his class. Mr. Immesoete also directed work featuring a tough-talking, Brazilian fighting cockatoo.

In a spot from DDB, New York, a guy shows off a robot fueled by Bud Light.

A tree that grows Bud
A spot in contention from Omnicom's Goodby, Silverstein & Partners, San Francisco, features a tree that grows bottles of Bud Light. And Omnicom's Downtown Partners, Toronto, created a spot showing what happens when a guy sticks his head through a wall to get Bud Light.

For Bud, the brewer will run a Clydesdale spot from DDB, Chicago, showing the horses in a snowball fight. Anheuser-Busch will also run a spot showing a soldier arriving in an airport from service overseas. That emotional spot will be produced by DDB, Chicago.

Spokesmusicians Nelly and Tim McGraw bump into each other at an airport in another Bud spot from DDB, Chicago, that may run.

The same Chicago office also created a designated driver spot that will run in the fourth quarter. In it, Cedric inadvertently inspires a new dance at a nightclub.

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