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Tuesday, 23 January, 2001, 16:20 GMT
Drink-drive ad wins Hollywood accolade
Advertisement shows horrific results of drink-driving
Advertisement shows horrific results of drink-driving
An anti-drink driving television advertisement made in Belfast has been judged the best of its type in the world.

It won the gold award for the world's best commercial in the live action category at the International Broadcasting Awards 2001 in Las Vegas. They are sponsored by the Hollywood Radio and Television Society.

The advert is a shocking and graphic short film which shows a car with a drunken driver at the wheel, crashing through a fence killing a child playing football in his garden.

It was made by McCann-Erickson and funded by Northern Ireland's Department of the Environment and the National Safety Council in the Irish Republic.

During a viewing of the 60-second commercial, entitled Shame, American television executives gasped at its impact.

Actor Kevin Sorbo, who presented the award to McCann-Erickson, described it as heart-breaking and heartfelt. He said: "Wow, this ad should also win a humanitarian award."

'Saving lives the real bonus'

McCann-Erickson Managing Director David Lyle said afterwards: "World recognition like this is good for our economy. It shows we have the creative talents and media skills to deliver at a global level."

Julie Anne Bailie, executive creative director added: "Winning this gold is very special - but saving lives on the roads will be the real bonus we are looking for."

The commercial has drawn a big response from the public in Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic. It has been judged to be so hard-hitting that it can only be shown on TV after 2100 GMT.

It was launched late in 2000 and was designed to shock motorists out of drinking and driving in the run-up to Christmas.

The figure of 800 people, killed in drink-related road accidents over the last five years on both sides of the border, persuaded the authorities to plough 250,000 into the advert's production.

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See also:

25 Jul 00 | Northern Ireland
Young drinkers prefer 'shock tactics'
02 Oct 00 | Northern Ireland
NI road safety criticised
05 Apr 00 | Northern Ireland
'Shocking' death toll on NI roads
09 Nov 99 | Northern Ireland
The drive to save lives
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