GREENVILLE, S.C. (April 19, 2001) — Just being cute isn't enough anymore.
The "Michelin Baby," after nearly two decades of communicating Michelin Americas Small Tires safety message by sitting, crawling and otherwise being cute, will strut its stuff in a new advertising spot — courtesy of computer animation.
In a new 15-second television spot due to air on network television April 24, the Michelin Baby will appear to dance using a tire as a hula-hoop. To achieve this special effect, Michelin turned to Digital Domain, one of Hollywood's leading computer effects companies. The firm handled much of the computer animation in the films Titanic and The Grinch.
"We wanted to do something really extraordinary to celebrate our J.D. Power record," said Alison Heiser, Michelin brand manager, referring to the company's sweep of all four J.D. Power tire awards last year. "Getting the baby to stand up and boogie seemed fitting for the occasion."
The spot was created by DDB New York, MAST's agency of record for the past 17 years. The companies are ending this relationship this year, however.