By Barry Janoff
February 6, 2013: Soccer icon David Beckham may be out of sight, leaving the U.S. and Major League Soccer to play in France, but he will not be out of mind.
A new marketing campaign for H&M's 2013 Spring Beckham Bodywear line lets Beckham flash his toned body, tattoos and athletic prowess to sell underwear designed by Team Beckham.
The campaign is anchored by a TV spot, breaking on network and Internet today, in which Beckham races through backyards, across tennis courts and into swimming pools in an attempt to catch a Range Rover that has snagged his bathrobe.
The spot, billed as "A Short Film directed by Guy Ritchie" (Sherlock Holmes), was filmed on location in Beverly Hills, according to H&M.
Support includes print, in-store, Internet and social media such as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube. Beckham recently signed a five-month deal with to play with the Paris St Germain club, so the campaign will follow him overseas. The campaign was handled in-house in conjunction with Beckham's creative team.
The commercial begins with Beckham seeing his wife and kids (unseen and not the real Victoria Beckham and offspring) off in the family Range Rover. One of the doors closes on the corner of Beckham's bathrobe, which gets pulled away as the vehicle leaves.
Simultaneously, the front door to Beckham's estate closes shut, leaving him in a tank top and underwear and with seemingly no other choice but to chase after the Range Rover.
That sends the 37-year-old Beckham scampering down the road, through backyards, across tennis courts, doing a lap in a swimming pool, interrupting kids playing soccer, over the hood of a car in which two paparazzi are sitting and past gardeners (one of whom is wearing a Beckham jersey) and watch dogs.
Ultimately stopping to catch his breath, Beckham encounters a van filled with camera-clicking tourists seeking celebrities and their homes. Which sends him racing downhill again toward his quest.
Beckham scores points for actually appearing to run at full speed, not an easy task considering he's wearing adidas slip-on sandals and not soccer, jogging or basketball shoes. (See the full spot here).
The action is played out to "Don't Stop" by Foster The People.
The campaign comes about a year after Beckham's premier outing for H&M and the launch of the Beckham Bodywear line via marketing that broke in 2012 during Super Bowl XLVI.
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