Carlton Draught Drop The Bomb

Fosters Australia and media company Austereo collaborated to run the Carlton Draught promotion, “Drop the Bomb”, hosted by Fox FM’s Hamish and Andy. Clemenger BBDO Melbourne worked with the radio station to develop an interactive campaign loosely based on the popular Skytroop television commercial from 2008. A car was taken into the air in a Carlton Draught branded Short Skyvan Cargo plane and dropped onto a target below, a 20×20 meter bulls eye with a Carlton Draught logo on it.

Carlton Draught Drop the Bomb promotion

Contestants competed for a chance to donate a crappy old car (the bomb) during a two week radio promotion hosted by Hamish Blake and Andy Lee. The audience decided the winner by voting online on the worst bomb: a 1991 Ford Laser owned by Gillian Wright of Canberra. Gillian wanted to drop her bomb because “Ermy the blue submarine” had no power steering, hub caps or front number plate. “She just hasn’t been the same since I accidentally drove her into a lake… I think she deserves an honourable death!”

A second contestant, Bill Johnson from Warrnambool, was chosen from on-pack promotion. It was his job to decide when to drop the car out of a plane flying at 14,000 feet. The deal was, if he hit a 1km target on the ground, he won $100,000. To create more radio drama, if he missed he still won a car but the owner of the bomb got nothing. Promoted in-store, on cartons, radio and the web; the contestants entered online using a unique code found on Carlton Draught cartons.

Hamish and Andy and Drop the Bomb contestants Gillian and Bill with the money

On Friday April 17, after 12 months of pre production planning, the production team was ready to shoot. Millmerran was chosen as the most suitable spot in Australia to conduct the drop. The production crew needed perfect wind conditions and no rain for the “drop” to be safely executed.

The car was modified to remove all possible environmental problems and make it safe for the skydiving crew jumping out of the plane with it. Engine, fuel tanks and oil lines were removed. The doors, boot and bonnet were welded shut. Glass was removed and replaced with perspex.

All went to plan. The car dropped out of the sky, missed the bulls eye but landed within the designated zone. Gillian got her new car. Bill got his cash.

Over the days of the drop, six 90 second webisodes streamed live from the Hamish & Andy website, watched by 992,000 people each day. Viral films follow online.

Click on the image below to play the video.


The Drop the Bomb ad was developed at Clemenger BBDO Melbourne by creative director/copywriter Ant Keogh, creative director/art director Grant Rutherford, executive creative director James McGrath, TV executive producer Sonia von Bibra, senior agency producer Jason Byrne, group account director Paul McMillian, account director Michael McKeown and account manager Sam Mackisack.

Filming was shot by directors Karl Von Moller (also director of photographer) and Ant Keogh, with camera assistant David Cordell, editors Richard Hamer and Aaron Bickford. See Karl’s take on the shoot at Artisan Films.

Ant Keogh, creative director, was part of the ground crew, filming well away from the drop zone. He said, “This was one of the most stressful shoots I’ve done, mainly because of the unknown element in dropping a heavy object 14,000 feet. Amongst other things I learnt, when dropped from 14000 feet, a car takes about a minute to hit the ground. At that height, the plane looks like it’s right above you which is fairly disconcerting. But I guess that’s also what makes it interesting.”

Austero director/editor was Angus Stevens, with producer Sam Cavanagh, director of photography Tim Bartley, operations director Kirsten Leigh and photographer Jeremy Carne.

Sound was produced at Flagstaff Studios, Melbourne.

Hub Plus Pty Ltd staff included producer Jason Byrne and production manager Elizabeth Rocka.

The Fosters Australia team included general marketing manager Peter Sinclair, group marketing manager Vincent Ruiu, senior brand manager Richard Oppy, brand manager Mim Orlando and brand assistant Kate Richmond.

Hamish and Andy Drop the Bomb crew

Nir Davidson organised the crew from the Melbourne Skydiving Center based at Lilydale Airfield in Victoria.

The Drop in Real Time

Click on the image below to play the video.