Colonel Sanders arrives in France as KFC unveils its new brand platform with Sid Lee Paris

Ads, Advertising

Colonel Sanders has landed in France. The famous fried chicken chain opened its first restaurant in the country back in 1991 but, 26 years later, only 3% of French people know who he is. For over a quarter of a century his trademark face has appeared on buckets but has never been a part of the brand’s communication. Until now. 

KFC, along with its agency Sid Lee Paris, are building his story, launching a new communication platform to kick off the year. The campaign’s inauguration began with an epic 90’ film directed by Jeff Low (La\Pac), which aired in prime time, introducing the enigmatic figure to the population for the first time. The film follows the Colonel who, after overhearing 2 young Frenchmen chatting indifferently about his chicken, embarks on a journey from Kentucky to the Gallic country. Intent on introducing himself, he’s prepared to confront any challenge to explain that his is no ordinary bucket of chicken, that his secret blend of 11 herbs and spices took him over 40 years to perfect (in a remarkably strong American accent of course, lest we forget his origins).

Our hope is to make Colonel Sanders a real pop culture personality in France. It’s an incredible opportunity to be able to tell the story of such a persona

Céline and Clément Mornet-Landa,

Creative Directors Sid Lee Paris

Our feeling is that the product needs to be at the heart of the discussion. Behind the history of Colonel Sanders, there’s the history of the recipe that we’ve always wanted to share with the French people

Mehdi Benali,

Managing Director Sid Lee Paris

The orchestration of Colonel Sanders’s welcome was befitting of any celebrity, with:

  • An outdoor campaign to announce his arrival
  • A Twitter Uptime activation that posted a tweet every minute for the hour leading up to the film’s launch
  • An interview with pop culture site Konbini

And even internally at the brand a number of KFC employees were treated to an exclusive in-person introduction to the Colonel who delivered a keynote speech. The launch of Colonel Sanders is only the first chapter in a new history for the brand, a story that will continue throughout the year.

More than an ad campaign, our objective is to put forth a genuine storytelling about Colonel Sanders and his recipe. And to set it up through a privileged exchange between the brand and French people

 Pascale Laborde

Marketing Director KFC France


Agency: Sid Lee Paris
Client: KFC France
Ad Title: Colonel Sanders
Chief Creative Officer: Sylvain Thirache – Executive Creative Director
Brand Supervisors: Frédéric Levacher, Pascale Laborde, Sophie Lacroix, Cécile Lequeux
Creative Directors: Céline & Clément Mornet Landa
Agency Supervisors: Johan Delpuech – President, Mehdi Benali – Managing Director, Héloïse Marchal – Account Director, Benoit Fernandes – Account Manager
Copywriter: Simon Lamasa
Art Director: Sophie Dherbecourt
Head of Strategy: Benoit Pellevoizin
Strategist: Patrice Zamy
Head of Production: Thomas Laget
Agency Producer: Marine Redon
Production Company: La\Pac
Producer: Delphine Guerin
Director: Jeff Low
DOP: Martin Ruhe
Music: Sanjiv Sen
Music Producer: Schmooze
Post Production: Mathematic
Post Producers: Jane Jamaux & Paul Crehange