Cingular Wireless, a fledgling joint venture between BellSouth and SBC Communications that only began advertising itself during the AFC championship two weeks before Super Bowl XXXV, ties into football with this spot celebrating the art of the end-zone touchdown dance.
The ad via BBDO New York presents Donald Willis of the Kansas City Chiefs, Kevin Gogan of the San Diego Chargers, Damien Woody of the New England Patriots and Marvin Harrison of the Indianapolis Colts learning from a ballet instructor. (None of the players pictured would actually have a shot at a Super Bowl touchdown in 2001, when the Baltimore Ravens and the New York Giants were the only teams on the field.)
Cingular ran two other ads in Super bowl XXXV ("Artist," "Dancer"), each taking a different path to the same conclusion about self-expression, a bid to differentiate the brand from competing carriers' focus on coverage and prices.
By virtue of the mobile customers that BellSouth and SBC contributed to their joint venure, Cingular was the No. 2 wireless operator in the U.S. at its very start. After a series of mergers and acquisitions in the telecom industry, however, AT&T wound up the owner of the Cingular brand, which it retired in 2007.