Marlboro Man in Sex Change

02 April 2001

A woman’s gotta do what a woman’s gotta do!

Not least the touting of Philip Morris cigarette brand Marlboro in over 4,000 German movie theaters.

In a gender-busting image makeover, Philip Morris Deutschlandand agency Leo Burnett have transmogrified the brand’s famed lone cowboy into ‘Lady Mustang’ – a blonde, lipsticked, lariat-whirling Marlboro girl.

The reason? Women make up nearly half of Marlboro smokers today, according to Philip Morris Deutschland spoke Beate Kunz. “They identify with the ideas put forward by the Marlboro country concept – freedom, self-confidence and adventure. What we are saying with this advert is that in Marlboro country there is space for many people, including women," quoth Kunz.

Leo Burnett director Mike de Pauw put it more succinctly: “We simply want to surprise people”.

However, aficionados of the manly cowpoke need not fear. He has not been laid-off – yet. Kunz reassures: “There will always be male cowboys. But the world of Marlboro is more than a man on a horse and we want to show this diversity. One [of the series of seven new commercials] shows a cowboy doing a series of stunts on a horse, getting off and then thanking the horse for the ride.”

“We are not completely sure what the next ads will involve, but I can't see why the Marlboro woman couldn't meet Marlboro man at some stage,” coyly added Kunz .

News source: Advertising Age - International Daily