If you never thought ketchup ingredients were scary before, think again. Heinz is pranking viewers with a Halloween campaign this year in which innocent-seeming videos suddenly reveal the pretty monstrous faces of some sliced tomatoes.
Designed to showcase the natural tomatoes that go into Heinz products, the EMEA campaign by Wunderman Thompson Spain consists of a series of interactive billboards and social posts.
At first glance, the social posts and billboards appear to be traditional pieces of content, like ASMR recipe videos of tomatoes being sliced, or "optical illusions"– but if viewers watch for long enough, they’ll be startled by the sudden apparition of a horrifying tomato.
The team worked with photographer Josep Maria Roca, who shot hundreds of natural tomatoes, "carefully studying and shooting them to highlight the natural ‘terror’ in their faces," according to a statement.
The campaign is running across Spain, Chile, Turkey, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Sultanate of Oman, United Arab Emirates and Qatar.
See more of this year's Halloween campaigns
"Halloween was another opportunity for us to lean into a cultural moment to surprise and delight our customers," said Thiago Rapp, Kraft Heinz head of communications and brand building, in a statement. “Wunderman Thompson Spain approached us with a fun way to tout our tomato expertise and showcase there’s nothing terrifying about the tomatoes that go into our products.”
“It used to be thought that there’s nothing terrifying about a tomato, but when shot in a certain light, some tomatoes can be extremely scary. Even without the use of post-production, we were able to highlight the horror on their ‘faces’. By using the right product – the same variety that goes into Heinz Ketchup – we’ve been able to create an international campaign that’s as scary, and natural, as possible,” added Paco Badia, executive creative director at Wunderman Thompson Spain.
No matter how scary the sliced tomatoes looked, they weren't too frightening to eat. All of the tomatoes featured in the campaign were used to make gazpacho once they had been photographed.