Viewers going to one of the more than 1,000 Cineplex Odeon theaters
in the country in March and April have probably seen a public service advertisement
for the World Wildlife Fund before their movie started. The charity was
able to produce the ads with the help of the American Express Company.
The 60-second spot, which was filmed in Venezuela, shows a tropical
rain forest teeming with life. The announcement begins much like a preview
to a movie, showing a dark skinned native standing waist-deep in water
and aiming a bow and arrow toward the sky. The camera then pans to show
birds flying above, followed by a close-up of a jaguar.
The entire spot was filmed in slow motion and is accompanied by music
that sounds exotic and wild. Printed words are superimposed on the scenes:
"The air you breathe... half the medicine known to man. . . a possible
cure for AIDS. This is the rain forest. Every second another acre is destroyed
forever." At the end of the announcement the wildlife fund's logo
is shown, with a phone number that viewers can call for more information.
American Express is also listed as the sponsor of the ad.
The public service announcement, part of a three-year campaign by the
wildlife fund, was originally designed as a television spot. Ogilvy &
Mather, an advertising agency in New York, donated its services to design
two film announcements, three radio ads, and three print ads. Total production
costs were about $300,000.
After completing the filming, Ogilvy & Mather showed the announcements
to another of its clients, American Express. That company had been purchasing
screen time from Cineplex Odeon theaters since 1989 to show ads and a collection
of short, award-winning animated films. The company decided to donate the
screen time it had purchased for about eight weeks in March and April to
the World Wildlife Fund, so it could show its announcement. American Express
also paid to produce the copies used in the theaters.
For more information contact:
Dana Lauren West, Communications Associate
World Wildlife Fund
1250 24th Street, N.W., Washington 20037;