Gabrielle Union, Chris Bosh, Candace Parker and DJ D-Nice star a re-make of an iconic spot that strikes just the right tone
Budweiser has unveiled a contemporary and timely version of its iconic ‘Whassup’ commercial as a reminder for America to prioritise check-ins with loved ones as the country endures unprecedented social isolation to combat Covid-19. The new spot is part of a broader PSA that features weekday programming across Budweiser’s digital platforms to encourage check-ins with family and friends.
To launch the campaign, Budweiser partnered with former NBA superstar Dwyane Wade and his wife, actress Gabrielle Union, along with their network of some of the biggest names in sports and entertainment, including Wade’s former Miami Heat teammate Chris Bosh, 2x WNBA MVP and star of the Los Angeles Sparks Candace Parker, and DJ D-Nice during one of his ‘Club Quarantine’ dance parties. A second episode featuring Wade, Union and other stars will premiere later this month.
“Thanks to modern technology, we’re able to remain virtually connected in ways that otherwise we would not have been able to within the current distance-mandated climate,” said Monica Rustgi, vice president of marketing for Budweiser. “In times like these, something as simple as a hello, or in this case ‘whassup,’ means a lot. Following the unbelievable success of the original ad campaign, we found this to be a meaningful opportunity to revisit the original spot’s simplicity and focus on human connection in a time when people may be feeling hopeless, uncertain, and alone. Our hope is that by getting people to check in, we can play a small part in bringing the world closer together during these trying times.”
“My wife and I wanted to partner with Budweiser because we believe the message is crucial,” added Wade. “We both remembered the original ‘whassup’ ads and love the idea of bringing them back as a genuine PSA to connect with each other. We encourage everyone to take a moment out from their day to check-in with their friends and loved ones during this difficult time.”
Budweiser has partnered with The Salvation Army as part of the PSA campaign. In response to rising levels of anxiety, uncertainty, and fear resulting from the pandemic, The Salvation Army launched a nationwide hotline in April.
“During times of crisis, feelings of isolation and fear can be overwhelming, and we want people to know there’s someone here to listen,” said David Hudson, National Commander of The Salvation Army. “The unknown is the hardest part, but thanks to Budweiser, more people will know that they’re not alone. We’re going to get through this - together.”
In addition to the spot, Whassup giveaways, live chats and challenges will be held every day at 6PM, headlined by live celebrity Q&As on Thursdays where a different celeb will respond to fan-submitted questions over a Bud via Instagram Live on @BudweiserUSA. The brand will also make a donation to the Salvation Army to help those in need due to Covid-19.