Company: Warner Bros

Agencies: PHD, Drum, ITN Productions, Brick Sports, Brotherhood Workshop, Moving Picture Company

Market(s): UK

Timing: February 9, 2014

To promote the release of The LEGO Movie, Warner Bros coordinated the surprise release of an all-LEGO ad break in the middle of Sunday night television.

BACKGROUND

To hit its UK box office targets, The LEGO Movie needed to persuade adults to see it, instead of dismissing it as a “kids film about toys”. This was done by creating a media collaboration which would rekindle childhood memories of the magic of the brand and unlock everyone’s inner child by joyously turning part of their recognizably “grown-up” world into LEGO.

THE IDEA

In The LEGO Movie, the whole world is made of LEGO. The campaign set out to replicate that.Four existing TV ads by the British Heart Foundation, BT (British Telecom), Confused.com (an insurance aggregator) and Premier Inn hotels were shot-by-shot and brick-by-brick re-done in LEGO — and broadcast across a peak time commercial break on the UK’s biggest commercial TV channel, ITV.

THE PROCESS

PHD was lead agency, Drum managed content and production, and ITN Production, Brick Sports, Brotherhood Workshop and Moving Picture Company produced the ads.

The success of the ad break is a testament to the appeal of the idea. Over 5 months, 23 different stakeholders across 3 countries re-made 4 TV ads from 4 brands via the efforts of 3 production companies and 3 media agencies — and Warner Bros only paid for their own media.

THE RESULTS

The world’s first all-LEGO ad break became the best performing ad break YouGov has ever measured.   The ad break also influenced an incremental 5% of opening week box office revenue, returning £5.96 for every £1 Warner Bros. spent.