In honor of Smokey Bear’s upcoming 75th birthday on August 9, FCB New York and the U.S.D.A. Forest Service, the National Association of State Foresters and the Ad Council have teamed up to celebrate the nation’s favorite bear in an innovative new animated emoji campaign.
For 75 years, Smokey Bear has been recognized as a symbol of wildfire prevention, and FCB has developed Smokey campaign assets since his first introduction in 1944. But to make Smokey’s important message of wildfire prevention resonate even deeper, so that it’s heard throughout the nation, Stephen Colbert, Al Roker and Jeff Foxworthy are now lending their voices to this historic campaign—the longest-running public service initiative in U.S. history.
For years, through the voice of Academy Award-nominated actor Sam Elliott, Smokey Bear has only said five words: “Only you can prevent wildfires.” To complement this iconic catchphrase, Smokey’s friends are stepping up to say a bit more about wildfire prevention on his behalf and to help millions of Americans understand the importance of the issue, why they should care and that it’s not just about campfires anymore. Utilizing cutting-edge facial recognition and mapping technology coupled with instantly recognizable celebrity voices, the animated emoji campaign has enabled Smokey’s famous friends to speak through him and further raise awareness of fire safety and wildfire prevention in an effort to reduce the incidence of human-caused wildfires.
Smokey Bear’s message is as important as ever, as wildfires continue to be one of the most critical environmental issues affecting the U.S. On average, almost nine out of 10 wildfires nationwide are caused by people. To learn more about Smokey Bear and wildfire prevention, visit SmokeyBear.com.