The Samurai who loves to get rich

It’s a brief as tough as it gets for any creative agency: In the midst of an 8-week McDonald’s Monopoly promotion, launch the Samurai burger.

Forget the single-minded campaign idea, how about taking the idea to places and people you’d least expect?

It might just create the most amazing sort of creative leaps.

The Challenge

How do you marry the traditional, classic Samurai with the modern day frenzy of Monopoly?

Well, here’s the advice to the macho-man Samurai: Resistance is futile, if you can’t beat them, join the bandwagon for Monopoly.

The Insight

You don’t have to be Donald Trump to love McDonald’s Monopoly.

Even our classic Samurai loves the thrill of winning at McDonald’s Monopoly.

If a creative idea is about combining two seemingly unrelated ideas, in a fresh, meaningful and compelling way, we’ve created a brilliant breakthrough to bring Trump and Kurosawa together.

The Idea & Execution

How do you bridge the worlds of the modern Monopoly and the classic Samurai?

Well, you bring on the black-and-white Kurosawa epic film noir of the traditional Samurai and transpose him into the modern day lust for riches and winning: A Citroen car, cash prizes, cruise holidays and 4 million other prizes.

“Go win with Samurai”

Shot beautifully in near-Kurosawa cinematography complete with the heroic Samurai, his geisha love interest and even the corruptive master, it’s been a long time since we saw such film noir made for social media.

It was strangely familiar yet refreshingly different: Monopoly campaign has found a new hero and fan follower.

It makes for epic and surprisingly successful entertainment.

And it was very funny – as we see our black-and-white Samurai clamour for the prizes that he sought for in his very heroic life, especially dubbed over in Japlish.

We released a series of three film spots that spread like wildfire on social media.


The Results

Sales from the record-high Monopoly promotion went up a further 10% week-on-week and 20% year-on-year.

Social views of our videos hit over 300k in Facebook alone and social chatter not only paid compliments to the videos, but also fuelled the excitement of the Samurai return.

But it’s not over yet.

The lusty Samurai is still hankering for the Citroen car yet to be won. So do 5 million Singaporeans.

It only goes to show: You don’t have to be Donald Trump to love McDonald’s Monopoly.