‘Big News With Shaq’ – New Campaign from Abu Dhabi Department of Tourism

To announce their event calendar, the Abu Dhabi Department of Tourism and Culture has tapped NBA legend Shaquille O’Neal for a series of ads featuring Shaq as a news anchor.

The spots were directed by Nalle Sjöblad with Production company Dejavu.

According to Serviceplan: “We wanted to create the gravitas around each experience, and the concept of merging Shaq as the new anchor to announce the upcoming lineup of events felt like a perfect match.


It also helps that Shaq has followers across age groups and varied interests, because Abu Dhabi has something for everyone as well.”

Akhilesh Bagri CCO, Serviceplan Middle East said: “It’s a busy time for tourism around the world, with COVID restrictions all but gone. The idea of taking a humorous approach to this campaign was a no brainer consider the comedy chops of Shaq. The challenge was to make sure that the content becomes a thumb stopper on people’s scroll. If bitesize content is king, we thought why not super-size it. This approach gives us a chance to post fresh content all through winter. We thank Déjà vu and DCT for giving us this opportunity.”

Manasvi Gosalia, Executive Producer, Déjà vu added: “As exciting as it is to shoot with legends like Shaq, the logistics involved in a run-up to it is always like walking a tight rope. We had less than half a day of shoot time with Shaq, understandably considering his packed schedule and travel. We found a way to find him mid-commitments and maximize that time to get the results we were looking for.  Of course, Shaq is simply flawless when the camera starts rolling, so that made things easier. The only downside to his perfect take after take would be that now we don’t have a bloopers reel.”



Title: Big News with Shaq
Client: Nouf Alboushelaib/ Director Of Strategic Marketing & Communications Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi
Client: Imane Zebrini/ Brand Unit Head – Strategic Marketing & Communications · Department of Culture and Tourism – Abu Dhabi

Agency: Serviceplan Middle East
Chief Creative Officer: Akhilesh Bagri
Creative Director: Andre Couto
Managing Director: Natalie Shardan

Worldwide Executive Creative Director: Jason Romeyko
International Communications Officer: Lee Sharrock

Production company: Dejavu
Director: Nalle Sjöblad
Director of Photography: Max Smeds

Executive Producer: Manasvi Gosalia
Producer: Sampada Harkara
Executive Producer Authentic Brands: Jeremy Castro
Rolling Pictures USA Producer: Mark Maxey
Rolling Pictures USA Producer: Stephanie Holland

UPM/ Line Producer: Mark Maxey
Production Manager: Jimmy Ray
1st Assistant Director: Scott Carter
Script Supervisor: Ramona Taylor
Creative Director: Michael Fitzgerald
Production Designer: Rodrigo Cabral
Art Director: Katherine Thorpe
Big News Desk design & fabrication: Jenny de Jaager
Key Grip: Tomo Sasaki
Gaffer: Mike Wilson
Production Sound Mixer: Doug Horvat

Shaq stylist: Renee Brown
Shaq double: Elijah Everett
ABG – Shaq Associate: Cara Parks
ABG – Shaq Associate: Melissa Bergson

Post Production: Dejavu
Post Producer: Rafic Sawaya
Editor: Rizwan Maple
Grade: Faisel Merheb
Online: Dejavu

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