In 1986, Cliff Freeman and Partners began working with a small, Detroit-based family pizza chain named Little Caesars. Recognizing the star quality of a plump, pint-sized, robed character, Cliff Freeman branded the fast-food chain (and his agency) with an irreverent humor as outrageous in its execution as it was precise in its strategy.
With one little Roman and two words-"Pizza! Pizza!"-Cliff Freeman changed the face of comedy in advertising. The agency has produced laughs at the expense of Michelangelo, retro TV stars such as Butch "Eddie Munster" Patrick and Jimmy "J.J." Walker, the sex lives of the elderly, market research and, most recently, sheep cloning.
In 1988's "Origami," a sales assistant at a rival pizza company made an origami pterodactyl for a customer out of his superfluous pizza. Another early extra-cheese promotion, "Cheeser! Cheeser!", led to a series of spots heavy on sight gags, such as one that showed a baby in a high chair being spun around the house by the cheese on her pizza.
More than a decade's worth of work has garnered the agency 300-plus advertising awards, including eight One Show Pencils for "Best Campaign of the Year," Cannes Lions, Clios and others. The shop's work for Little Caesars is some of the best the industry has to offer. Sometimes that's not enough. -Eleftheria Parpis