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Milan Expo 2015 launches television ad campaign

Star chefs play celebrities in image-boosting soccer match

27 December, 15:37
Milan Expo 2015 launches television ad campaign (By Emily Backus). (ANSA) - Milan, December 27 - Milan Expo 2015 drummed up cheers and awareness this week, launching a television advertising campaign and staging an attention-getting soccer match between celebrity cooks and show-business personalities for the food-themed World Fair, which is set to run May to October 2015 under the theme "Feeding the Planet. Energy for Life".

Milan Expo 2015 debuted a 30-second advertising spot Sunday, which will continue to be aired on all of Italy's major television channels: broadcasters RAI, Mediaset, La7 and the satellite channel Sky. The spot, created by 1861united - an Italian subsidiary of advertising giant WPP - is drumming up local participation in Milan Expo 2015 with a message that revolves around the pay-off "Made of Italians".

The expression is a play on the phrase "Made in Italy", evoking one of Italy's points of economic strength - manufacturing and artisanship - as well as a cultural point of pride. Sunday afternoon, the star chefs beat the RaiExpo team eight to four in "Waiting for the derby - Everyone Together for Expo", a match that pitted teams of five against five, organized with the collaboration of public broadcaster RAI and culinary culture hub Identita' Golose (Glutinous Identities) at the football field of Milan's Bollate Penitentiary Institute. Leading Italian chefs Massimo Bottura, Massimilano Mascia, Nicola dell'Agnolo, Stefano Binda, Cesare Battisti, Luciano Monosilio, Giancarlo Perbellini, Davide Oldani and Peruvian master Jorge Raul dribbled for the winning team, while Davide Scabin sat on the bench due to an injury. Their coach was journalist and Identita' Golose brand curator Paolo Marchi.

The RaiExpo coach, 76-year-old TV host, director and actor Renzo Arbore, summoned a decidedly smaller high profile line-up with Expo Commissioner Giuseppe Sala as captain, the historic centre of the Inter soccer team Evaristo Beccalossi, winner of the reality show 'Peking Express' Marco Maddaloni, and Italian actors Francesco Pannofino and Sebastiano Somma. Milan Mayor Giuliano Pisapia and Lombardy Governor Roberto Maroni kicked off the ball to start the game, while ex-international referee Daniele Tombolini directed the match. Ex-commentator for Italy national games and ex-pro soccer player, 75-year-old Bruno Pizzul, commentated on the live broadcast via internet streaming on the websites of Milan Expo 2015, Rai Expo, and the sports newspaper Gazzetta dello Sport (

Meanwhile, Expo's physical preparations hit a new milestone last week as 26 countries taking part received lots for the construction of their pavilions during a ceremony at Milan's Triennale Museum.

The countries receiving their lots were China, France, Israel, Switzerland, Ecuador, Germany, Kuwait, the United States, Saudi Arabia, Monaco, Japan, Oman, Azerbaijan, United Arab Emirates, Kazakhstan, Slovenia, Hungary, Mexico, Austria, Chile, Iran, Qatar and Romania.

These countries will be the first to access the Expo grounds to begin building their pavilions starting from January 2014.

The corporate participants China Vanke, Case New Holland, and China Corporate Pavilion also received their lots.

A lump of soil was the symbolic gift from the Expo to the heads of the participant's delegations.