McDonald's Goes Blue This Summer With Launch of "The Smurfs(R)"

New Global Happy Meal Program Encourages Kids and Families to "Be a Friend of the Planet" and Focuses on the Great Taste of Fruits and Vegetables

OAK BROOK, Ill., July 29, 2011 // PRNewswire // -- McDonald's invites kids and families around the world to go Smurfy blue this summer with the launch of The Smurfs®, Happy Meal promotion. Celebrating today's release of The Smurfs®, Columbia Pictures' and Sony Pictures Animation's highly anticipated 3-D family comedy, the worldwide Happy Meal program promotes the importance of good environmental stewardship and family togetherness. The Happy Meal fun, which focuses on the great taste and appeal of fruits and vegetables, kicked off at participating McDonald's restaurants in Latin America on July 14 and in North America today, rolling out around the world through November.

"McDonald's is committed to playing a positive role in children's well-being," said Kevin Newell, executive vice president and global chief brand officer, McDonald's. "The Smurfs Happy Meal program delivers great quality food choices, fun toys and engaging digital content that reinforces important environmental messages."

"By working together with McDonald's, we created a fantastic, fun and ultimately unique program that brings the enchanting world of The Smurfs to millions of people around the globe," said George Leon, executive vice president, Sony Pictures Consumer Marketing. "Our partnership is just one example of how two beloved brands can engage kids and families in new and meaningful ways."

"The Smurfs" Around the World at McDonald's

Smurfs may only be three apples tall, but the legendary blue characters are helping McDonald's make a difference this summer in more than 100 countries around the world. Customers will see a specially created live-action and computer animated global television commercial; in-restaurant Smurf signage and packaging; and social media updates on Facebook and Twitter. The global McDonald's Happy Meal promotion will be brought to life on McDonald's interactive, online experience for kids – Stage M. The action-packed site has been Smurf'd to feature exciting new content that motivates and encourages them to be a friend of the planet. A new music video featuring Smurf characters uses colorful animation and fun tunes to teach kids about the environment. Online components also include kid-friendly activities and games focused on sustainability and augmented reality applications that allow parents and kids to Smurf-ize themselves.

Examples of innovative program extensions include:

  • North America: McDonald's restaurants in North America have teamed up with national nonprofit Keep America Beautiful (KAB) to invite kids to "Smurf the Earth" by choosing Apple Dippers in their Happy Meals. Those Apple Dipper packages feature a digital code and when that code is entered at HappyMeal.com, McDonald's and KAB will plant a tree (up to 100,000) in needed or devastated areas within national forests across the country.

"For more than 10 years, McDonald's and Keep America Beautiful have collaborated to keep community and social responsibility at the forefront of McDonald's operations and consumers' minds," said Matthew McKenna, president and CEO, Keep America Beautiful, Inc. "Together with McDonald's 'Smurfs' Happy Meal program, we're helping kids and families across North America easily play a role in improving the world in which they live."

In addition to the digital activation, 16 different Smurf toys in fun poses will be offered in Happy Meals beginning today through August 25.

  • Latin America: McDonald's restaurants will launch a one-of-a-kind Smurfs augmented reality program that transports kids into the Smurfs' village with Papa Smurf and all his pals. Augmented reality imagery will be printed on Happy Meal boxes and in-restaurant menu board displays featuring animated "Smurfs" footage, which also will connect customers with the movie experience. "Clumsy" carrot bags will have fun themed packaging to encourage kids to choose these items.
  • Brazil: The program will showcase the fun personalities of the Smurfs with plush toys followed by Smurf figures with fun functions. In-restaurant signage, crew apparel and packaging will feature scenes from the Smurfs' village. One million sunflower packets also will be given away.
  • Europe: McDonald's is bringing the Smurfs characters to life across its digital properties in Europe. New and engaging content, such as a Smurfs game that invites children to help take care of Papa Smurf's flower pot garden, reinforces messages of sustainability while teaching about the importance of keeping the environment safe and clean. Mobile activations and in-restaurant avatar items also will unlock Smurfs fun at McDonald's. All European countries will feature plush Smurfs Happy Meal toys.
  • United Kingdom: Children and families will "Get Smurfin' and Grow Crazy" with McDonald's as they learn about the environment with the help of all the Smurfs characters. A Smurfs drawing competition invites children to receive their very own mini Smurf flower garden and the chance to win a Smurfs gardening kit. Happy Meals will feature up to 10 specially-designed Smurf plush toys that capture the unique and loveable personalities of the Smurfs. "Smurfilicious" fruit bags and "Clumsy" carrot bags also will have fun themed packaging to encourage kids to choose these items.

The online kids' Smurfs experience is available through McDonald's country websites in the United States, Latin America and Asia Pacific, as well as through McDonald's global website, www.aboutmcdonalds.com.

About McDonald's

McDonald's is the world's leading global foodservice retailer with more than 32,000 locations serving approximately 64 million customers in 117 countries each day. More than 80% of McDonald's restaurants worldwide are owned and operated by independent local men and women. To learn more about the company, please visit www.aboutmcdonalds.com and follow us on Facebook (http://www.facebook.com/mcdonaldscorp) and Twitter (http://www.twitter.com/mcdonaldscorp). For more information about McDonald's environmental efforts, please visit (http://www.aboutmcdonalds.com/mcd/csr/about/sustainable_supply.html).

About the Smurfs

The story of the Smurfs - a property created by Peyo - started in 1958 with the creation of comic books which were later brought to both the big and small screen. Over the years, the little blue characters haven't just limited themselves to the page and the screen. They have inspired records and CDs that have sold millions of copies, entire collections of figurines and toys, and many more products. In all, more than 3,000 derived products have been produced and leading brands and companies have spread their messages worldwide with the help of the Smurfs. A multitude of new projects appear regularly, thus making the success of the Smurfs planetary!

About the Movie

The Smurfs make their first 3D trip to the big screen in Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures Animation's hybrid live-action and animated family comedy, The Smurfs. When the evil wizard Gargamel chases the Smurfs out of their village through a magical portal, they land in the middle of New York's Central Park. Just three apples high and stuck in New York City, the Smurfs must find a way to get back to their village before Gargamel tracks them down. Directed by Raja Gosnell. The producer is Jordan Kerner. The screenplay is by J. David Stem & David N. Weiss and Jay Scherick & David Ronn from a story by J. David Stem & David N. Weiss, based on the Characters and Works of Peyo.

About Sony Pictures Entertainment

Sony Pictures Entertainment (SPE) is a subsidiary of Sony Corporation of America, a subsidiary of Tokyo-based Sony Corporation. SPE's global operations encompass motion picture production and distribution; television production and distribution; home entertainment acquisition and distribution; a global channel network; digital content creation and distribution; operation of studio facilities; development of new entertainment products, services and technologies; and distribution of entertainment in more than 140 countries. Sony Pictures Entertainment can be found on the World Wide Web at http://www.sonypictures.com.

About Sony Pictures Animation

Sony Pictures Animation produces a variety of animated entertainment for audiences around the world. The studio is following its 2009 worldwide hit, the mouth-watering 3D comedy Cloudy with a Chance of Meatballs, and the 2007 Academy Award®-nominated Surf's Up with a full slate of feature films including the live-action/animation hybrid film The Smurfs (3D) and the family comedy, Hotel Transylvania (3D)

  • The division is also in production with Aardman Animations on two feature films, the CG-animated family comedy Arthur Christmas (3D) and the stop-frame animated high-seas adventure, The Pirates! Band of Misfits (3D). Open Season 3, the third adventure in Sony Pictures Animation's successful Open Season franchise, was released on DVD and Blu-Ray™ January 2011. Sony Pictures Animation is an operating unit of Sony Pictures Digital Productions.

About Lafig Belgium S.A.

Lafig Belgium is the owner of the rights to produce audio-visual works based on the Smurf universe and of the Smurf worldwide licensing rights (together with IMPS). Lafig Belgium is controlled by the heirs of Pierre Culliford, better known under his pseudonym Peyo, the author/creator of the Smurfs. For 50 years, the Culliford family has controlled the Smurf characters and all licenses worldwide.

About Keep America Beautiful, Inc.

Keep America Beautiful, Inc., established in 1953, is the nation's largest volunteer-based community action and education organization. With a network of more than 1,200 affiliate and participating organizations, Keep America Beautiful forms public-private partnerships and programs that engage individuals to take greater responsibility for improving their community environments. For more information, visit www.kab.org.

SMURF, and all the Smurfs characters: ©Peyo, All Rights Reserved. "Smurf" and "The Smurfs" are registered trademarks of STUDIO PEYO.

To access product images or logos, please visit: http://mcd.to/pjS2rn

© 2011 McDonald's

SOURCE McDonald's

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