Brett Goldstein—Roy Kent on ‘Ted Lasso’—promotes happier exercise habits for Les Mills

In the campaign video, the New Zealand-based fitness brand mocks the harsh approach to exercise often celebrated in the fitness space.

Published On
Jun 26, 2023
Sad Brett screaming in rainy gym

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An intense “no pain, no gain” mentality has long pervaded fitness advertising, with brands in the space often focusing their ads on athletes engaging in extreme, sometimes painful-looking exercises. Now, New Zealand fitness brand Les Mills is challenging that overly harsh approach to fitness—and teaming up with “Ted Lasso” actor Brett Goldstein to help spread its message internationally.

Les Mills’ “Choose Happy” campaign, which launched today, satirizes the punitive mindset often associated with exercise. The two-minute-long ad plays into the grouchy, aggressive personality of Goldstein’s on-screen character, Roy Kent, and shows him engaging in a comically-hardcore fitness routine in a dark, desolate city—complete with the occasional, raging fire—and being haunted by his father’s words urging him to exercise even more intensely.

Toward the end of the ad, however, Goldstein is transported to the lush greenery of New Zealand, where he encounters a group fitness class serenely exercising, along with New Zealand actress Acushla-Tara Kupe. The actress tells him Les Mills has “workouts anyone will enjoy. Even you, you bloody weirdo.”


The spot, which will air internationally, was created by agency nice&frank and directed by Andreas Nilsson, who has previously produced commercials for brands such as Apple and Uber Eats, among others.

In a cheeky reference to Goldstein’s grouchy persona in “Ted Lasso,” Les Mills has also dubbed Goldstein the brand’s first “happiness ambassador.” In this role, Goldstein will help the fitness brand continue its efforts to sway Gen Z and Millennial gym goers to Les Mills’ group exercise classes and other fitness offerings. According to the brand’s recent survey of over 4,000 Gen Z consumers around the world, 64% don’t exercise regularly, and nearly half cited the desire to “feel better” as their top reason for wanting to work out more frequently. Additionally, 57% are continuing to struggle with negative impacts to their mental health following the pandemic.

The campaign also involves a search for two additional “happiness ambassadors” to help spearhead Les Mills’ efforts to court younger gym-goers. In late July, the brand will select two winners from a pool of applicants and invite them on a three-month-long trip to New Zealand.

In mocking the stereotypically extreme attitude around exercise that continues to characterize fitness advertising, Les Mills aims to urge “anyone who dreads working out” to instead “discover [exercise], in fact, can be a key to happiness,” Goldstein said in a press release.


Jun 26, 2023
Client :
Les Mills
Agency :
Chief Creative Officer & Co-Founder :
Laura Petruccelli
Chief Strategy Officer & Co-Founder :
Graham North
Creative :
Erica Stevens
Creative :
Lucy Sandwick
Social :
James Gross
Design :
Claudia Di Martino
Design :
Ben Gallegos
Executive Producer :
Benton Roman
Director of Culture & Strategy :
Drew Forrest
Brand Strategist :
Ray Yoes
Account Director :
Alyssa Fitterer
Account Director :
Kelsey Burke
Group Chief Executive Officer :
Clive Ormerod
Chief Customer Officer :
Luke Waldren
Head of Brand & Voice of Customer :
Alice Atherton
Global Head of Content & Social :
Chris Asahara
Global Social Media Manager :
Zoe Ballantyne
Senior Global Brand Lead :
Gemma Jelicich
Global Content & PR Director :
Jak Phillips
Global Design Director :
Jessica Huynh
Design Lead :
Meg Golbry
Senior Legal Counsel :
Anna Burt
Campaign Planning Specialist :
Alia Jones
Business Affairs :
Michelle McKinney
Business Affairs Director :
Christina Rust
Senior Business Affairs Manager :
Whitney Vose
Senior Business Affairs Manager :
Emily Goodman
Production Company :
Co-Production Company :
Director :
Andreas Nilsson
Partner / Managing Director :
Shawn Lacy
Executive Producer :
Holly Vega
Producer :
Caroline Kruck
Head of Production :
Sean Moody
Director of Photography :
Lasse Frank
Production Designer :
Lucinda Thomson
Wardrobe Stylist :
Sophie Fletcher
Wardrobe Stylist :
Kristin Seth
Wardrobe Stylist :
Michelle Martini
Hair & Make Up Artist :
Kerrie Urban
Hair & Make Up Artist :
Georgia Lockhart
Editorial :
Work Editorial
Editor :
Rich Orrick
Cutting Assistant :
Joseph Tuzzolino
Executive Producer :
Alejandra Alarcon
Head of Production :
Chris Delarenal
VFX Supervisor / 2D Lead :
Robert Bruce
Shoot Supervisor :
Naomi Anderlini
Compositor :
Ben Kwok
Compositor :
Hannah Wilk
Compositor :
Dylan Nett
Compositor :
Marco Baratto
Compositor :
Myles Dunlop
Compositor :
Matt Reilly
CG Generalist :
Ben Elliot
Marc Samson
Producer :
Lily Sarokin
Production Coordinator :
Joey Witten
Executive Producer :
Charlotte Arnold
Head of Production :
Perry Tate
Colorist :
Mikey Pehanich
Color Assist :
Sam Howells
Color Producer :
Adam Vevang
Mix :
Heard City
Managing Partner :
Gloria Pitagorsky
Mixer :
Phil Loeb
Head of Production :
Jackie James
Executive Producer :
Liana Rosenberg
Senior Producer :
B Munoz
Producer :
Nick DuVarney
Assistant Producer :
Dylan Stetson
Assistant Mixer :
Virginia Wright
Assistant Mixer :
Zoltan Monori
Assistant Mixer :
Chenoa Tarin
Assistant Mixer :
Oddy Litlabo
Sound Design :
Trinitite Studios
Sound Designer :
Brian Emrich
Music :
Composer :
Philip Kay
Producer :
Andy Oskwarek
Stills :
Stills Photographer :
Graeme Murray
Executive Producer :
Fleur Swarbrick
Stills Retouching :
Swell Digital
PR Agency :
Lion Media Group
President and Founder :
Charles Leone
Earned Media Creative/Strategy :
Keith Gordon
Consumer Media Relations Consultant :
Sammy Eanes
Ad Trade Media Relations Consultant :
Sarah Corbin

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