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Chatime mocks familiar Asian dictator in Australia-made ad

Taiwanese bubble tea franchise Chatime is launching a potentially controversial ad mocking an Asian dictator who bears a striking resemblance to North Korean leader Kim Jong-Un.

Chatime ad

Australia’s The Sphere Agency is behind the campaign which is anchored in a minute-long YouTube ad giving the campaign global exposure and will be supported through social channels.

The ad, which was produced by Brainstorm Inc in Jakarta, features the dictator ordering numerous minions to be dragged away for displeasing him, as he demands to be offered something amazing that he has never experienced before – as an old man proffers an iced tea.

The drink transforms his life, as the sombre ad jumps to a Barry White-inspired 1970s disco soundtrack with the dictator dancing and leaping along a water chute and has his face painted.

However, the joy comes to a sudden end when his finishes his drink.

In Australia, the ad is to run on multicultural channel SBS and the Pop Asia program, a 24/7 Asian pop hits show featuring music videos from Korea, Japan and china.

Michael Abdel, managing director at Sphere, said he hoped to do with Chatime what the agency had famously achieved with Nandos in Australia, creating conversation around the cheeky ad.

“It’s been a joy to work with Chatime. They have a very clear understanding of their brand and are brave enough to embrace their target market’s bold, fun-loving attitude,” Abdel said.

Chatime’s general manager, Carlos Antonius, said the brands needed a different style of advertising that matched its personality.

“Chatime isn’t your typical iced tea – it’s a fun twist on iced tea that appeals to people with a sense of adventure,” Antonius said.

“We wanted to bring that sense of adventure and fun to the fore with a TVC far removed from what you’d expect from an iced tea brand.”

Sphere rose to prominence in Australia as a tactical agency with its work for Nando’s. Among the most notable campaigns was a stunt at the launch of Sacha Baron Cohen film Bruno in 2009 where a lookalike pulled up in pink stretch Hummer accompanied by scantily dressed models.

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