Wieden’s Pizza Hut Spot Suffers a Short Shelf Life

Wieden + Ken nedy’s first work as a new roster shop for Pizza Hut has been pulled off the table after only a week. Replacing it is a spot from longtime agency BBDO, sources said.

Wieden’s “Where’d the cheese go?” ad for the Insider pizza broke on May 13. It is unclear when it was pulled, but as of May 20, it already had been replaced by the BBDO commercial, sources said.

A client representative would neither confirm nor deny that BBDO produced the second spot, but acknowledged that the original one had been replaced.

Asked why the change was made, she said, “We don’t speak publicly about our strategy.” Executives at Wie den and BBDO declined to comment.

However, sources said Pizza Hut, like most fast-food retailers, measures its sales daily, and sales were down the week the first spot aired.

Wieden’s ad showed people look ing for cheese. A man opens a sandwich, another sucks the empty can of a cheese product, and a girl on a school lunch line eyes a macaroni dish and asks, “Where’s the cheese at?”

A song plays throughout with the chorus “Where’d the cheese go?” followed by the refrain, “Inside, inside.” Close-ups of the pizza show its cheese-filled crust.

BBDO’s ad uses the same product shots but not the song or people. Instead, a male voice over emphasizes the “revolutionary” variety and amount of cheese in the Insider.

Wieden, based in Portland, Ore., became Pizza Hut’s second shop two months ago [Adweek, March 12] after a review for the Insider assignment. BBDO in New York has held the main $140 million Pizza Hut account since 1987.