De pitch
De pitch
IDFA 1990

De pitch

The Pitch
Bernie IJdis
59 min
Festival history
De pitch is a film about the world of advertising. Advertising is a well-known phenomenon, but how it is exactly developed and functions, only a handful of insiders knows. The field behind the slogans and catching clips is almost unknown and inaccessible. The main reason for this is the confidential and competition-sensitive business information supplied by the client to the advertising agency. Major interests are at stake for the client. What is more, the agency adds a particular atmosphere to the product; the reality behind the advertisement might spoil the effect of that distinctive atmosphere. A final reason is, of course, the cutthroat competition between the various agencies.
The agencies are especially secretive when it comes to 'the pitch'. When an advertiser wants to change his advertising agency, several other agencies are assigned to come up with their proposal for the next campaign. The client chooses the best plan and the agency concerned lands the important campaign. The procedure, which looks a lot like a match, is called 'the pitch' in the jargon.
One of the most sensational pitches was the competition for the 'Amstel' campaign. The two biggest advertising agencies of Holland participated in this race. FHV/BBDO has made the legendary Heineken- and Amstel-advertisements for decades.
PMSvW/Y&R is the other agency that has a considerable record. Examples are the campaigns for the Postbank, Smiths-salties, KLM, and Bokma. Manager Jim Prins has invented some immortal slogans.
During a pitch, the agency must come up with the best it has to offer in a short period of time. This means not only a sum of money, but also honour and prestige. Only one agency can get the definite assignment. This film follows this nerve-racking process and constructs a revealing portrait of the advertising agencies and their world.