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DDB Chicago - Skittles Super Bowl 2019

04 February 2019

LIA Insider Newsletter – Super Bowl Edition -- Skittles Broadway the Rainbow Q&A

Answered by Ari Weiss, Chief Creative Officer, DDB North America

 

Q1: How and why did the creative team and Mars come up with the idea of a Broadway spectacle on Super Bowl Sunday? Most Super Bowl fanatics are in front of a TV set from very early in the day through the end of the post game.

The Skittles Brand team gave us the dream assignment to create as large of a conversation as possible in the weeks leading up to the Big Game. The actual game day activation is purely proof of concept and hopefully an incredibly entertaining show for the 1,500 people who paid up to $200 a ticket (all proceeds from ticket sales donated to Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS).

Q2: How does DDB and Mars see this segue to that audience? How is Mars going to leverage the 1500 theater fanatics who go see the production and translate that into something that appeals to Super Bowl fanatics? 

This has always been a mainstream earned media play. Sure we’re putting on an actual Broadway show, and have collaborated with the best in the business (Will Eno, Sarah Benson, Drew Gasparini), but it’s the absurdity of what we’re doing that we hoped would bridge the gap between theater enthusiasts and the general population. A week before the show we had already seen overwhelming coverage in outlets including The New York Times, Wired, People Magazine, “Good Morning America”, Reuters, US Weekly, USA Today, Forbes and many more.

Q3: The DDB team has a lot of experience producing creative for the Super Bowl, but this is the first time most of you have ever produced a Broadway show. What have you learned during this process that you can apply to future work? 

Producing a Broadway musical is a very fluid and organic process. Unlike commercials, a show takes on a life of its own and changes with each rehearsal. For many of us working on the project that are slightly OCD it can be both a curse and a blessing - you can keep changing the script and perfecting the scenes as you go, but once you get it right you can’t ensure you’ll ever get that performance again. It’s a beautiful and haunting living organism that you have to love for the life it takes on. And life is full of surprises both horrifying and delightful.