Classic Advertising from the Adbrands Archive

 

Canal+ "Emperor" by BETC Paris (2006)

French pay-TV service Canal+ has for years been defined, especially outside France, by its long-running partnership with Parisian creative powerhouse BETC. Countless industry watchers who have never set eyes on a Canal+ broadcast will be aware of the platform from BETC's brilliantly imaginative ad campaigns for it. This agency/client partnership first came to international prominence with the splendid 'Emperor' spot which riffs on a simple misunderstanding between two office workers. He's telling her about the fantastic documentary he saw on Canal+ the night before, 'La Marche de l'Empereur' (which was released internationally as 'March of the Penguins'). He's talking about emperor penguins, of course, but she thinks he means Emperor Napoleon, with wonderfully comic, increasingly bizarre results. That's why you need to watch great television, not just hear about it. A succession of equally clever ads followed from BETC, not least 'The Closet' and 'The Bear', both of which accumulated shelfloads of trophies at the international advertising festivals. The relationship between BETC and Canal+ continues to this day, but for sheer madness, this first collaboration remains the gold standard.

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