Belfast Telegraph

Pepsi turns to Jackson in ads push

Pepsi has announced a deal with Michael Jackson's estate to use his image in a new global ad campaign.

The promotion will include a TV ad, special edition cans bearing the Thriller star's image and chances to download remixes of some of Jackson's most famous songs.

Consumers in the US and China will be the first to get a taste of the Jackson campaign in coming weeks, which is timed to coincide with the 25th anniversary of Bad, the singer's multi-platinum album. The campaign will spread to about two dozen countries later this year.

Although Pepsi is banking on the nostalgia Jackson can evoke, the partnership also resurrects painful memories.

In 1984, the pop superstar's hair famously caught fire while filming a commercial for Pepsi in Los Angeles.

A spark from a pyrotechnics display landed on the singer's head. Jackson suffered severe burns, and many trace his addiction to painkillers to the incident. Pepsi gave Jackson 1.5 million dollars (£930,000) as a result.

Pepsi, which first partnered with Jackson in 1983, did not disclose the terms of its deal. The promotion is part of a global marketing blitz as the firm looks to revive its brand and win back market share from Coca-Cola.

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