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[06/29/05 - 12:00 AM]
Showtime Puts a New Twist on an Average Day in the Burbs for Weeds On-Air Campaign

[via press release from Showtime]

SHOWTIME Puts a New Twist on an Average Day in the Burbs for Weeds On-Air Campaign

NEW YORK, June 29 -- In Agrestic, California, the setting for the new SHOWTIME comedy series WEEDS, "mother's little helper" is no longer a gin bottle tucked in the cupboard -- it's a jay in a Prada handbag. But subtlety is key in Agrestic and in the on-air campaign for WEEDS, where you might not notice the little leaves of reefer. WEEDS, from Lions Gate Television, which stars Mary Louise Parker, Elizabeth Perkins and Kevin Nealon, debuts August 7 at 10:30 PM. It will multi-play on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays at 10:00 and 10:30 PM and Sundays at 10:30 PM.

The centerpiece of the on-air campaign will debut this weekend and is a launch spot titled, "Beautiful New Day." The promo depicts a typical day in suburbia for Nancy Botwin (Parker), a soccer mom who is putting her life back together after the unexpected death of her husband. She gets the kids ready for school, meets a friend for lunch, has her nails done ... and discreetly drops dime bags all over town. To make ends meet Nancy has started selling marijuana to her wealthy friends and business is booming.

"We wanted these spots to be subtle, yet enticing," said EVP of Creative & Marketing Len Fogge. "They had to set-up the situation but not give away too much of the story. We want viewers to be curious and to tune in to find out more."

The official on-air campaign, developed by the Showtime in-house agency Red Group, began with a :25 teaser "Suburban Grass." The spot opens with a slow pan over a suburban community, and ends on a front lawn over a growth of marijuana under the text "She's got the best grass in the neighborhood." Three clip-based teasers, that establish the cast, began airing in May with tips on how to Speak Agrestic -- where grass is defined both as a narrow herbage used for lawns and a hot commodity. Several funny, double-entendre tags lines were also developed for the campaign including "a fresh new comedy about dealing in the suburbs" and "moma's got a brand new bag."

Working on the campaign for Red Group were Creative Director Angie Speranza, Art Director Christina Black, VP Broadcast Production Howard Sherman and Line Producer Diane Johnson. For "Beautiful New Day" the crew also included Senior Writer/Producer Melody Regnier, EP Javier Jimenez from Motion Theory and Composer/EP Dave Baron from Edison Music Corp who re-recorded the up-tempo music that lends its title to the spot. For "Suburban Grass," the crew included Senior Writer/Producer Julie Carillo and EP Garson Yu of yU+Co production company. For the "How to Speak" teaser the crew included Writer/Producer Elaine King.

Produced by Lions Gate Television in association with Tilted Productions, WEEDS is executive produced by Emmy(R) Award winner Jenji Kohan ("Friends"). Brian Dannelly ("Saved!"), who directed the series premiere, is a consulting producer and will direct additional episodes. Roberto Benabib ("Ally McBeal") is co-executive producer.

Showtime Networks Inc. (SNI), which is a wholly owned subsidiary of Viacom Inc., owns the premium television networks SHOWTIME(R), THE MOVIE CHANNEL(TM) and FLIX(R), as well as the multiplex channels SHOWTIME(R) TOO(TM), SHOWTIME(R) SHOWCASE, SHOWTIME EXTREME(R), SHOWTIME BEYOND(R), SHOWTIME NEXT(R), SHOWTIME WOMEN(R), SHOWTIME FAMILYZONE(R) and TMC xtra. SNI also offers SHOWTIME HD(R), THE MOVIE CHANNEL HD(R), SHOWTIME ON DEMAND(R) and THE MOVIE CHANNEL ON DEMAND(TM). SNI operates and manages the premium television network SUNDANCE CHANNEL(R), which is a venture between NBC Universal, Robert Redford, and Showtime Networks Inc. All SNI feeds provide enhanced sound using Dolby Digital 5.1. SNI markets and distributes sports and entertainment events for exhibition to subscribers on a pay-per-view basis through SHOWTIME(R) PPV. Additionally, the advertiser-supported television network SHOWTIME is available in Turkey through a joint venture with UK-based Zone Vision.

SOURCE Showtime Networks Inc.
Web Site: http://www.SHO.com





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· ALLY MCBEAL (FOX)
· FRIENDS (NBC)
· WEEDS (SHOWTIME)





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