Publicis New York, Neil Patrick Harris Attempt to Present a Light Lager from Amsterdam As the ‘Official Beer of St. Patrick’s Day’

By Erik Oster 

Heineken may have ended its relationship with W+K and selected Publicis as its lead global ad partner, but Neil Patrick Harris is sticking around.

Following Publicis’ “Famous” spot for the brand late last month starring Benicio del Toro, Harris is back promoting Heineken Light in the 30-second online spot “Leprechuan.” The ad sees opens with Harris presenting Heineken Light as “the official beer of St. Patrick’s Day,” much to the chagrin of a leprechuan who points out that the beer isn’t even Irish (to say nothing of the abomination that is light beer, or packaging beer in green bottles). Harris responds by changing his tune, instead promoting the product as “the best light beer you’ve ever tasted.” When the leprechuan concedes that the assessment is fair, Harris proceeds to break out his awful attempt at an Irish accent (which sounds a bit Russian to us). It’s more of the same “reluctant pitchman” approach for the brand and Harris, not much of a departure at all from what W+K was creating for the brand last year and not any more successful in its attempts at humor. The spot marks the beginning of an online campaign from Publicis’ New York office, so expect to see more from Harris in the near future.

“This is the first in a series of digital videos for Heineken Light to come in 2016, and we felt St. Patrick’s Day is the right time to call out Neil’s useless Irish accent, even if it is by a legendary mythical figure,” Publicis Worldwide North American chief creative officer Andy Bird explained to Adweek. “NPH has been a spokesperson for Heineken Light for two previous campaigns already, and his style of humor fits the bill perfectly, in the same way that Benicio’s slightly more intense style does for Heineken.”

Client: Heineken
Campaign Title: Best Tasting Light
Agency: Publicis Worldwide
Agency Location: New York/Italy


CEO & Executive Creative Director, Publicis Italy: Bruno Bertelli
Chief Creative Officer, Publicis North America: Andy Bird
EVP, Executive Creative Director, Publicis North America: Joe Johnson
VP, Creative Director, Publicis North America: Jason Gorman
VP, Associate Creative Director/s, Publicis North America: Einav Jacubovich, Josh Horn, Cuanan Cronwright
Copywriter, Publicis North America: Patrick Merritt
SVP, Creative Services Director, Publicis North America: Paul Daligan
VP, Executive Producer, Publicis North America: Tim LeGallo

EVP, Group Account Director, Publicis North America: Kathryn Harvey
Worldwide Account Director, Publicis Italy: David Pagnoni
Account Director, Publicis North America: Shari Lederman
Account Supervisor, Publicis North America: David Hoctor

Production Company: Radical Media
Director: Steve Miller
Executive Producer: Gregg Carlesimo
Line Producer: Matt O’Shea

Editorial Company: Cutting Room
Editor: Sean McGrath
Executive Producer: Melissa Lubin
Producer: Kelly Ondris
Assistant Editor: Megan Katuran