Philadelphia Cream Cheese Slices Into the Great Thanksgiving Cheesecake Conspiracy

GUT leads a not-so-rigorous investigation

How many times have you sat at the Thanksgiving table, sopping up what's left of the gravy with a half-eaten roll, head lolling from too much tryptophan, only to perk right up, fork at the ready, when Granny wheels in the cheesecake for dessert? 

For most of us, the answer would be never, because pumpkin pie is the traditional Thanksgiving finisher. That's probably because, at the original Plymouth Colony get-together in 1621, the Pilgrims and the Wampanoag tribe rocked pumpkins as part of their feast. Much of the repast was surely eaten raw, and any cooking was done over an open flame. They didn't bake, for pity's sake, and they certainly didn't chow down on cheesecake! 

Or did they?

That's the kooky contention of a cute campaign developed by GUT for Kraft Heinz's Philadelphia Cream Cheese. Watch the short film below, as the Cheesecakers Society aims to expose a 398-year-old "conspiracy"—led by pumpkin and pecan pie interests, natch—and prove their namesake dessert was, in fact, on that first Thanksgiving menu. 

Cheesecakers Society

Pretty compelling stuff! Let's take a closer look at one of those historical paintings they showed in the film—The First Thanksgiving by Jean Gerome Ferris, from 1932. 

"Corn porridge," my butt! That looks like cheesecake. Sort of/maybe? If you tilt your head and squint at it for a long time? 

"The campaign is designed to resonate with our millennial consumers who don't traditionally consider making cheesecake for Thanksgiving," says Megan Magnuson, the brand's associate director of marketing. "We're addressing one of the top barriers, which is a belief that cheesecake is not a Thanksgiving dessert."

Next, they'll be telling us the Pilgrims ate bagels. Care for a schmear, Squanto?  

"Wait, Is That a Cheesecake" will run across social, online video, digital billboards and print. Given the political climate, conspiracies are all the rage these days, so the work slots in nicely for Thanksgiving 2019. 

We want to believe … and we want seconds!

CREDITS

Agency: GUT Miami
Spot: Wait, is that a Cheesecake?
Client: Philadelphia
Founder, CCO: Anselmo Ramos
COO, Partner: Paulo Fogaça
ECD, Partner: Ricardo Casal
ECD, Partner: Juan Javier Peña Plaza
Managing Director: Ricardo Honegger
ACD, Writer: Jeff Hodgson
ACD, Art Director: Eliana Ferrer
Sr. Copywriter: Frank Garcia
Sr. Art Director: Giulia Magali
Management Supervisor: Monique Beauchamp Estrella
Sr. Producer: Renata Neumann
Jr. Strategist: Wonsik Cho

Client:  
VP Marketing, Kraft Heinz: Ariel Suffern
Associate Director of Marketing, Philadelphia: Megan Magnuson
Sr. Associate Brand Manager, Philadelphia: Blythe Jeckel

Production/ Post Production
Production Company: Rocket Film
Production Service: Argentinacine
Director: Joaquín Güiraldes
Managing Director: Sara Eolin
Producer: Eduardo Cardenas
Line Producer: Alexis Tkach
DP: Luciano Badaracco
Production Designer: Valentina Luppino
Editor: Manuel Dondas
VFX: RatioFx
SFX/Mix: Nica Studio
Color Correction: Pentimento Studio
Music: Sonido Antro Miami

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David Gianatasio
David Gianatasio is senior editor at Clio Awards.

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