Mob star pushes Coke

Coca-Cola last night broke broadcast advertising for Vanilla Coke, the latest in a 20-year line of brand extensions for the world's largest soft drink firm.

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By  Richard Brown Published  June 11, 2002

Two prime time spots featuring 51-year-old Mobster tough guy actor Chazz Palminteri appeared on youth-oriented slots on News Corp.'s Fox and AOL Time Warner's WB. The ads ran around Boston Public, 7th Heaven and American Idol, a new series that Coca-Cola sponsors.

Vanilla Coke is the fifth line extension for the world’s biggest soft drinks manufacturer. Diet Coke was introduced in 1982, then Cherry Coke, followed by Diet Cherry Coke and Diet Coke with Lemon rolled out in 2001. The ads, designed to raise consumers' interest in the cream-soda-tasting brand, will run for six weeks and include radio, outdoor and Internet.

The promotions hinge upon male curiosity and the surprises that lie in wait when temptation gets the upper hand. In one sequence, a young man pops his head through a hole in a wall only to end up in a headlock. In another, temptation overwhelms a guy to look into a peephole only to be pulled through and confronted by Palminteri and a thug on the other side.

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