FCB Toronto Dares You to Guess Where This ‘Unbranded’ Campaign Takes Place

By Patrick Coffee Comment

When you hear the word “Canada,” what pops up? Strange Brew? David Cronenberg? South Park?!

If you’re an average viewer/American/skeptic, you probably don’t think of the geographically and culturally layered tapestry depicted in this new campaign from FCB Toronto. And it’s only about one province.

The ostensible purpose of this brand-free spot: inspiring viewers to try and figure out what sort of otherworldly yet cosmopolitan locale this could possibly be.

The answer: Ontario!

FCB’s press release tells us: “Launched with a riddle, an unconventional tourism campaign … is challenging public perceptions about Ontario – and how travel advertising can be done.”

One reason you might not know what to make of this work is that it was aimed at locals, or Toronto/Ontario residents who wouldn’t think of their own backyard when planning a vacation. Agency VP/creative director Nancy Crimi-Lamanna says, “People think they already know Ontario and so disregard it for travel. Showing those places would only have reaffirmed this perception. This campaign challenges that belief both visually and through a riddle.”

The campaign took 9 months to film, and it ran for 10 days before the client revealed the answer to its titular question. WhereAmI.com now redirects to the home of Ontario tourism, but an Instagram account launched to promote the work included some very obscure questions like “Four mouths feed only one. Where am I?” (It’s a reference to bodies of water.)

The reveal portion of the campaign involved a “Cineplex cinema take-over across Ontario” over the past long weekend, and now the ads give the answer away.

Some viewers seem to think this project imitates the work of filmmaker Leonardo Dalessandri. And it does bear similarities to pieces like his travel film “Watchtower of Turkey.” But imitation is the sincerest form of flattery as long as there are no lawsuits involved.

CREDITS

Client: Ontario Tourism Marketing Partnership Corporation
Ronald Holgerson: President & CEO
Lisa LaVecchia: Vice President, Chief Marketing Officer
Debra Mansillo: Special Projects Manager
Michelle Borthwick: Director, Brand Management and Consumer Marketing
Julia Holliday: Director, Digital Marketing

Campaign Title: Where Am I?
Medium/Media: Broadcast, Digital, Social

Agency Credits
Tyler Turnbull, CEO
Jon Flannery, CCO
Jeff Hilts, VP, Group Creative Director
Nancy Crimi-Lamanna, VP, Group Creative Director
Jeff Hilts, VP, Group Creative Director
Rob Dean, Senior Art Director
Cody Sabatine, Art Director

Writer:

Nancy Crimi-Lamanna, VP, Group Creative Director
Dave Delibato, Senior Copywriter
Joseph Vernuccio, Copywriter

Account Team:

Sunil Sekhar, VP, Management Director
Sarah Banks, VP, Business Director
Violet Karbalaei, Account Supervisor
Skye Gandy, Account Coordinator

Agency Producer: Rea Kelly, Producer Sumit Ajwani, Producer

Project Manager:

Kinga Karadi, VP, Operations
Michelle Simpson, Senior Project Manager
Emily Watkin, Project Coordinator
Carly Roy, Project Coordinator

Planner: Shelley Brown, VP, Chief Strategy Officer
Heather Segal, VP, Planning Director
Anastasia Tubanos, Senior Strategist
Kristy Pleckaitis, Lead User Experience
Shelagh Hartford, Digital Strategist

Other:

Jorge Vasconez, Agency Videographer
Rob MacLean, VP, Director of Communications
Production Credits

Production Company: OPC

Executive Producer Liz Dussault
Harland Weiss Donovan Boden
Line Producer: Karen Harnisch, Marc Swenker
Director: Andrew Cividino
DOP: James Klopko

Editing House: Rooster
Post Production Editor: Marc Langley
Assistant Editor: Eric Dubois
Transfer Facility: Alter Ego
Colourist: Eric Whipp
Online Facility: Fort York
VFX Online Artist: Ernie Mordak
Online Assistant: Melissa Vasiliev
Music House: Silent Joe
Music Track Director: Jody Colero
Exec Producer: Jane Heath
Song: “Giant”
Composer: Bruce Peninsula
arranged by Todor Kobakov
Engineer: Vlad Nikolic
Sound design: Vlad Nikolic

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