Gold creates ‘ghost billboard’ to promote Dad’s Army: The Lost Episodes

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To celebrate the release of Dad’s Army: The Lost Episodes on Gold, UKTV has unveiled a huge 1940s army-recruitment style out of home ad campaign which has been specially designed to look as if it has been in place for decades.

The specially created, time-weathered ‘ghost billboard’ harks back to WW2 propaganda advertising and has been designed to appear as if it has re-emerged after being lost to the ages.

Working with Hearts & Science and Talon Outdoor, the 45ft tall mural installed in Clerkenwell, East London took four artists from street art collective Global Street Art Agency 50 hours to painstakingly create using a combination of emulsion and over 250 cans of spray-paint. The mural was sandblasted to make it looked aged and is the first of its kind to be created by Global Street Art Agency. The artwork, designed by UKTV Creative head of design Peter Allinson, features the new cast from the re-made episodes of the much loved British comedy classic.

Scott Russell, creative director for UKTV, commented: “Ghost adverts, original hand painted murals that date back to the 1920s,30s and 40s, can still be seen on the sides of thousands of buildings up and down the country. The idea, a ghost billboard ‘found’ after years of being lost, fitted perfectly with Gold’s lost episodes of Dad’s Army, along with the creative execution of a 1940s style poster. We hope it’s a fitting tribute to this much-loved show that will delight fans of Dad’s Army.”

Crowds gathered as the artists meticulously worked to create the design, which calls on fans to ‘Join Dad’s Army’ and complete the story together. The artwork will be in place until September 2nd for fans to see.

The ghost billboard is part of an above-the-line campaign featuring innovative print formats in national media including a Daily Mirror masthead takeover with the iconic Dad’s Army arrow, an innovative ad format with The Sun, radio spots on Global and digital media formats. Extensive PR support has seen an experiential screening in an army recruitment centre, talent junkets and photoshoots including recreating original publicity shots and a Radio Times cover from the 1970s. While social on Gold’s Twitter and Facebook pages sees the cast explore what it was like to create the episodes and will include an exclusive short film on outtakes and bloopers after the series airs.

The highly anticipated Dad’s Army: The Lost Episodes re-creates three episodes from the second series of the beloved wartime comedy, The Loneliness of the Long-Distance Walker, A Stripe for Frazer and Under Fire are set to air from August 25th, celebrating fifty years since the episodes were first broadcast and last seen on TV.

The BBC routinely reused tapes after broadcast from 1967 – 1978 and subsequently the original recordings of the three episodes were all seemingly destroyed or reused as they have never been found.

The remakes, produced by Mercury Productions, use the original scripts written by comedy legends Jimmy Perry and David Croft and feature an all-star British cast including Kevin McNally as Captain Mainwaring, Robert Bathurst as Sergeant Wilson, Kevin Eldon as Lance Corporal Jones, David Hayman as Private Frazer, Mathew Horne as Private Walker, Tom Rosenthal as Private Pike and Timothy West as Private Godfrey.

Gold channel director, Gerald Casey said: “I’m thrilled that we are now ready to re-share these previously lost masterpieces with the public. As a huge fan of the show myself, it has been an honour to help complete the Dad’s Army story.”


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