VML Launches a Fellowship Program to Unite Its U.S. and China Offices and Reduce Turnover

As a relatively young global network (founded in 1992) VML noticed that while it's continuing to expand across the world, there has been some trouble developing a connection between its two biggest markets, the U.S. and China.

Gay Advertising’s Long March Out of the Closet

James Cash Penney, the son of a Baptist minister and founder of one of America’s enduring retail empires, probably rolled over in his grave.

The Humiliating True Story Behind Bridgestone’s ‘Reply All’ Super Bowl Ad

Remember that 2011 Super Bowl ad for Bridgestone Tires with the guy running all over town to keep people from reading an errant "reply-all" email? Turns out it was inspired by a nightmare that actually happened to the spot's creative director—while he was concepting an ad for the big game.

Sony Sues Its Vp of Everything, Kevin Butler, for Playing a Wii

It looks like one of the great spokescharacters of recent years has met an ignominious end. Sony is suing Jerry Lambert, the great commercial actor who has played Kevin Butler, a wise-cracking PlayStation exec, for several years, because he was seen playing a Wii driving game in a recent Bridgestone ad. Kotaku has the statement from Sony: "Sony Computer Entertainment America filed a law suit against Bridgestone and Wildcat Creek Inc."—the entity which reportedly handles Lambert's business affairs—"on September 11. The claims are based on violations of the Lanham Act, misappropriation, breach of contract and tortious interference with a contractual relationship. We invested significant resources in bringing the Kevin Butler character to life and he's become an iconic personality directly associated with PlayStation products over the years. Use of the Kevin Butler character to sell products other than those from PlayStation misappropriates Sony's intellectual property, creates confusion in the market and causes damage to Sony." You can see the Bridgestone spot below, which was later edited to remove Lambert and appears to have been scotched entirely now. Sadly, to see Kevin Butler in action, you'll have to watch unauthorized YouTube clips—as PlayStation appears to have scrubbed its own channel clean of his offending visage. No wonder he suddenly stopped tweeting at the end of August. Ad agency Deutsch declined to comment. Blog pages brightcove.createExperiences();

Idle Threat?

General Motors is driving a hard bargain, calling on broadcast networks to roll back pricing on their 2012-13 upfront inventory by as much as 20 percent—an opening gambit that has yet to pay off. And while a standoff could result in GM sitting out the spring bazaar altogether, the automaker’s absence is unlikely to have a long-term impact on annual TV revenues.

Two More Super Bowl Ad Teasers: Kia and Bridgestone

Super Bowl XLVI advertising teasers keep flowing in. Now we can add Kia and Bridgestone to the mix—and they're bringing a pile of celebrities with them.      First up is the Kia spot, "Drive the Dream," from David&Goliath (and Noam Murro, who also directed last year's Kia Super Bowl spot). Kia goes to such great lengths to describe the 60-second ad in the press release that you wonder why they didn't just put it on YouTube. We won't spoil it by revealing the exact plot, but the ad does feature all of the following elements: a woman sprinkled with fairy dust, a man sprinkled with even more fairy dust, a Fabio-like hunk (who is apparently not actually Fabio), Mötley Crüe, Adriana Lima, UFC fighter Chuck Liddell, champion bull rider Judd Leffew, an "extreme dream sequence," thousands of bikini-clad fans, bursts of flames and fireworks, a pair of lumberjacks sawing a massive sandwich, and a Snow White Pearl Optima Limited. The full ad will start airing in cinemas next Thursday, Feb. 2, with an extended version breaking the same day on YouTube. In the meantime, Kia will run the 15-second teaser ad below, starring Lima, on TV and in cinemas beginning Friday. brightcove.createExperiences();      Bridgestone's spot, from The Richards Group and director Erich Joiner of Tool, will humorously reveal how it plans to change the world of sports with a new football, basketball, bowling ball and puck made from the same materials and technology as Bridgestone tires. There's all manner of teasers leading up to the spot, which will star Tim Duncan, Deion Sanders, Steve Nash and Troy Aikman, among other athletes. In a bit of inspired casting, it will also feature Jerry Lambert—aka, Kevin Butler from the PlayStation campaign, as a Bridgestone scientist. He'll probably steal the show. See that teaser after the jump.

Bridgestone’s Super Bowl ad plan still fishy

Bridgestone is sponsoring the Super Bowl halftime show, starring those ancient mariners of rock, the Who. So, perhaps it's fitting that one of the tire maker's in-game spots from The […]