‘Don’t Mess’ Puts Bubbas in Rearview Mirror

Tuerff-Davis EnviroMedia launches the latest salvo in the war on roadside litter with an extension of the renowned “Don’t mess with Texas” campaign aimed at the under-24 crowd.
The Austin, Texas, shop has recruited celebrity actors and well-known indie directors for the new series of television ads. S.R. Bindler (Hands on a Hard Body) has directed one spot. Future directors are to include Robert Rodriquez (Desperado), Wes Anderson (Rushmore) and Tim McCandlies (Dancer, Texas).
“The previous target had been pickup-driving bubbas, but research showed males and females under 24 admitted most to littering,” said agency president Kevin Tuerff. “It’s going to be a pretty dramatic change for this campaign.”
In Bindler’s spot, actor Matthew Mc-Conaughey wrangles litterers, then escorts them across state lines after stamping “Messed with Texas” on their foreheads.
The Texas Department of Public Safety will distribute the spot to TV stations throughout the state and will supplement the program with a paid media schedule in six major markets in late October.
The agency inherited the “Don’t mess with Texas” campaign in a competitive review after GSD&M in Austin, the slogan’s originator, resigned the account.
Tuerff-Davis, devoted exclusively to environmental issues, was formed by two former employees of the Texas Natural Resource Conservation Commission. The 10-person agency projects 1999 billings of $2.5 million.