McDonald’s Franchisee Group in Play

CHICAGO—The McDonald’s franchisee group of Boston is launching a review for its estimated $15-20 million ad account, which for the past two years has been with Leo Burnett and its Starcom unit, both in Chicago, for creative and media, respectively, sources said. The group represents about 300 restaurants in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, New Hampshire and Connecticut, and moved to the Chicago-based shops from Arnold in Boston, following a review. Arnold, Burnett and DDB in Chicago handle various co-ops nationwide; DDB and Burnett handle the $600 million national McDonald’s account. Agency and client executives could not be reached by press time.

United Makes Cuts in Direct Review

CHICAGO—United Airlines has narrowed the review for its $50 million direct-marketing loyalty account to three agencies, according to a company official. Contenders are Grey Direct Marketing Group in New York and Chicago agencies DraftWorldwide and OgilvyOne. Cut from the review were Beyond DDB, Brann Worldwide, Frankel (with Publicis Dialog) and Wunderman, all in Chicago; FCBi in New York; J. Walter Thompson in Detroit; and Rapp Collins in Dallas. Incumbent Brierley & Partners in Chicago and Dallas did not participate. A decision is expected in November. United’s general ad agency, Fallon, is unaffected by the review.

St. Paul Cos. Moves Account to Fallon

CHICAGO—Fallon has picked up ad duties for The St. Paul Cos., an insurance company and owner of another of the Minneapolis shop’s clients, Nuveen Investments. St. Paul previously worked with Campbell Mithun in Minneapolis and held a review before selecting Fallon, an agency representative said. The company spent $35 million on ads in 2000 but less than $10 million last year and less than $5 million through July of this year, according to CMR.

BMW to Break Next Round of Films

CHICAGO—The next round of three BMW Films are set to launch on the Internet over four weeks, beginning on Oct. 24. This year’s films depict a driver—Clive Owen, reprising his role from last year’s series—in three different scenarios: rescuing a hostage; transporting a heart; and drag racing against the devil for James Brown’s soul. Unlike last year’s series, in which different vehicles were used for each movie, this year’s films all showcase the new Z4 roadster. They were directed by John Woo, Joe Carnahan and Tony Scott, and feature actors Gary Oldman, Ray Liotta, F. Murray Abraham and Don Cheadle, as well as a cameo by shock rocker Marilyn Manson. The company has struck deals with DirecTV to create a channel dedicated to running the films, and with Microsoft to run the films in digital-projection movie theaters.

Petsmart, Doner Part Company

DETROIT—Petsmart is working with several shops on projects following a split with Doner, which won the creative portion of the Phoenix-based client’s $20 million business about two years ago, a client rep said. Susanne Eiselsberg, svp, marketing, left Petsmart two weeks ago, and her duties are now with president and COO Bob Moran. There are no plans for a review, the rep said. Media is with Mediaedge:cia.