Hey, everyone trapped at home during lockdown: WHASSUP?
Here's one thing: Budweiser just revived its beloved "Whassup?" line in an amusing 90-second spot featuring former NBA superstar Dwyane Wade, his wife, actress Gabrielle Union, former Miami Heat standout Chris Bosh, two-time WNBA MVP Candace Parker, and DJ D-Nice.
When they get together for a group video chat, tongues start wagging as each tries to out-do the other on the classic catchphrase:
"Staying connected matters more than ever right now," the ad says at the end. "Checking in, that's whassup." A toll-free number for the Salvation Army's help line follows. Bud will also make a donation of $100,000 to support the organization's Covid-19 relief.
VaynerMedia developed the campaign concept, and Traktor's Ole Sanders directed. A second spot, also featuring Wade and Union, drops soon.
"Thanks to modern technology, we're able to remain virtually connected in ways that otherwise we would not have been able to within the current distance-mandated climate," Budweiser vp of marketing Monica Rustgi says in a statement. "In times like these, something as simple as a hello, or in this case 'Whassup,' means a lot."
She adds: "We found this to be a meaningful opportunity to revisit the original spot's simplicity and focus on human connection in a time when people may be feeling hopeless, uncertain and alone. Our hope is that by getting people to check in, we can play a small part in bringing the world closer together during these trying times."
DDB and director Charles Stone III created the original "Whassup?" commercial, which bowed during Monday Night Football on Dec. 20, 1999. By the time a follow-up spot ran on the Super Bowl in January 2000, the phrase had entered the lexicon.
Since then, "Whassup?" has risen a couple of times, most recently in February, when Bud and Uber joined for a Canadian Super Bowl spot with voice assistants getting in on the fun:
The campaign's pandemic resurgence harkens back to simpler times, when wacky phone calls and beer commercials were all some of us had on our minds.
As part of the push, starting April 30, Bud will offer its community the chance to say "Whassup" through interactive activations on its social platforms. The initiative features live chats, video sharing and competitions for exclusive merchandise, free beer and other prizes.
Marcel Marcondes: U.S. Chief Marketing Officer, Anheuser-Busch
Monica Rustgi: VP Marketing, Budwieser
Marisa Siegel: Sr. Director, Budweiser
Nick Kelly: VP, Partnerships, Beer Culture & Community
Matt Davis: Director, Budweiser
Marni Hamberg: Sr. Brand Manager, Budweiser
Mattie Shook: Brand Manager, Budweiser
Eddie Moye: Director, Marketing Communications
Lacey Clifford: Sr. Director, Marketing Communications
Rob Lenois: Chief Creative Officer, VaynerMedia
Adam Lock: Group Creative Director, VaynerMedia
Adrian Flores: Creative Director, VaynerMedia
Florian Marquardt: Creative Director, VaynerMedia
Evan Elberson: Associate Creative Director, VaynerMedia
Jamie Shin: Associate Creative Director, VaynerMedia
Nick Miaritis: Executive Vice President, VaynerMedia
Joe Leotta: Vice President, Group Account Director, VaynerMedia
Lindsay Faulkner: Account Director, VaynerMedia
Donald Spampinato: Senior Account Executive, VaynerMedia
Chloe Heller: Senior Agency Producer, VaynerMedia
Juliette Hashemi: Project Management, VaynerMedia
Aaron Kovan: Chief Production Officer, VaynerMedia
Laura Sorrentino: Executive Post Producer, VaynerMedia
Naina Gulati: Senior Post Producer, VaynerMedia
Haley Insley: Assistant Editor, VaynerMedia
David Benoit: Sr. Account Manager, 160/90
Eric Flinn: Creative Director, draftLine
Keslie Watts: Associate Creative Director, draftLine
Deniz Yegen: Associate Creative Director, draftLine
Diana Labrecque: Senior Producer, draftLine
Daniel Bergmann: President, Stink Films
Fran McGivern: Executive Producer, Stink Films
Natalie Jacobson: Producer, Stink Films
Paul Anastasiadis: SVP, M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment
DJ Hardy: Vice President, M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment
Vicki Scarfone: Account Director, M&C Saatchi Sport & Entertainment