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TVC: Ambuja Cementfeat. The Great Khali


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By: Publicis

Ambuja Cement last week unveiled its latest spot featuring wrestler and WWE personality The Great Khali. Narrated by him talking to the camera and with his perspective, it is about the difficulties he faces being a 7-foot-something man in his own house. The film shows him falling repeatedly, bumping into things and damaging material, especially walls. He later says his aunt advised him to rebuild the home using the brand, after which he’s shown bumping into a wall and not going through. The ad has gone viral over social networks immediately after launch.


Do we Like?


Absolutelyyes. And because everyone of you and their uncles have already watched and shared it, here are some FAQs:


Who’s behind this?

The one-minute film has much production detail and a budget equaling the cost of a small home in north Mumbai. The credit reel lists Publicis, the MNC which is part of the ‘big 4’ of the ad world. Early Man Films have produced it but I suspect the man behind the freshness is Bobby Pawar, who in July was made MD and looks over the agency’s top management.


Why has it gone viral?

Nobody expects a cement ad to have a sense of humour, especially Ambuja, which is associated with Amitabh’s serious tone. The biggest coup here is the casting of Dalip Singh aka Khali, India’s first World Heavyweight Champion, now a US citizen and a popular WWE name among youngsters. The film depicts him in an unusual manner, doing mundane things, highlighting his size and evoking laughter.


What makes it so funny?

The film has a terrific mix of understated, straight-faced humour and slapstick comedy. The viewer understands the travails of a giant man through his comic falls, while him talking to the camera makes the tone pseudo-serious, and the ‘teleshopping’ style of ‘..and then, I tried X’ makes it funnier.


Is it out-of-the-box?

No. The film follows a pattern–introducing the main character’s premise and moving the story forward using his voiceover and different shots (the single vox pop of his father is misplaced though). Even the last shot of them dancing to random music is a popular ad trope.


What will it do for the brand?

It has already done much– boosted its visibility through social networks. Every mention of Khali would make viewers think of this brand, for a while.


Where can I see more?

German Company Epuron made a genius film on a character called ‘Wind’ on these lines. Milind Soman’s recent films for Old Spice and a 2012 film called ‘Cat Toast’ for the energy drink Flying Horse are also worth watching for this brand of humour.


(To watch this film, enter this link in your browser - bit.ly/October_19)


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