Claire Beale on Advertising: The name's Bond – and I'm licensed to sell
Monday 08 October 2012
It's 50 years since James Bond made his film debut and the world's most famous secret agent has being having a not-so-secret affair with big brands ever since. From the watches, the beers and the cars that pay top dollar to feature as Bond's brands of choice in his movies, to the ads that have shamelessly appropriated some 007 cool, Ian Fleming's hero has probably sold more products than any other fictional character.
The latest Bond movie Skyfall is reported to have made almost a third of its total £90m budget from product placement deals with brands such as Heineken, Omega and Sony, and Bond-themed merchandise is to be found in almost every product category that can claim an association with style and glamour. Procter & Gamble has just launched a 007 scent for men "which embodies the duality of Bond; an opulent blend of sophistication and masculinity."
So it's no coincidence, perhaps, that when it comes to creating the iconic title sequences for the 007 movies, Eon Productions, makers of the Bond films, have turned to the ad industry for inspiration. Daniel Kleinman, founder of commercials production company Rattling Stick, is one of advertising's most successful and awarded commercials directors and has directed the titles at the start of Bond films for more than a decade.
But Bond has inspired adland too. Advertising creatives have never been slow to borrow from popular culture and in Bond they found the perfect shorthand for smooth, sexy and excitingly dangerous. When you've only got a 30-second ad in which to tell a story, being able to associate your brand with a set of ready-made qualities that consumers are already familiar with is a powerful tool.
One of Bond's most famous advertising legacies is the Milk Tray Man, the suave daredevil who risked life and limb to deliver his lady a box of chocs. The shameless 007 referencing created a back story for the mysterious, black-clad figure that lent him (and his box of chocolates) a glamour that for a while made Milk Tray appear the indulgence of choice for the jet set.
In the 90s Barclaycard spoofed Bond, using Rowan Atkinson as a hapless spy. In a neat twist, the spy-movie-inspired credit-card ads went on to spark a new movie franchise when Atkinson took the character to the big screen as Johnny English.
Even brand Britain has just launched a new global ad campaign fronted by Daniel Craig's Bond in a bid to boost tourism. The love affair between Bond and brands is, it seems, as passionate as ever.
Claire Beale is editor of 'Campaign'
- 1 Caitlyn Jenner car crash: Driver who died in collision sued by surviving passengers for $18.5m
- 2 Pictures show young Palestinian girl biting Israeli soldier trying to detain boy during West Bank protests
- 3 Watch the Supermoon live: How to see the brightest Moon of the year tonight
- 4 Hulk Hogan wants to be Donald Trump's running mate in the US Presidential election
- 5 Blood Moon and Supermoon: September to bring brightest – and dimmest – full Moon of the year on same night
Caitlyn Jenner car crash: Driver who died in collision sued by surviving passengers for $18.5m
Celebrity Big Brother 2015: Tila Tequila kicked off show after 'describing Hitler as a good man'
Watch the Supermoon live: How to see the brightest Moon of the year tonight
Hulk Hogan wants to be Donald Trump's running mate in the US Presidential election
Blood Moon and Supermoon: September to bring brightest – and dimmest – full Moon of the year on same night
Climate change: 2015 will be the hottest year on record 'by a mile', experts say
'Women only' train carriages: Jeremy Corbyn unveils radical move to tackle public harassment
Black holes are a passage to another universe, says Stephen Hawking
Iain Duncan Smith 'should resign over disability benefit death figures', says Jeremy Corbyn
Stock up on canned food for stock market crash, warns former Gordon Brown adviser
Tony Blair attacks Jeremy Corbyn's 'Alice In Wonderland' politics
iJobs Money & Business
£25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: From modest beginnings the comp...
£35000 - £40000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: From modest beginnings the comp...
£15000 - £65000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...
£18000 - £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is a fantastic opportunity...