Casting the Three (gay) Bears, the stars of Rowse Honey’s hairy pro-porridge cookery show

Rowse Honey’s new content series may have been inspired by the fairytale of The Three Bears, but it's the casting of a jovial trio of modern ‘gay bears’ that the brand hopes will connect with a fun, young consumer.

Rowse tasked its agency BMB with a simple brief: get more people, particularly millennials, putting honey on their porridge. The response was a three-part mini cookery show featuring three large, hairy, gay men in a cabin in the woods, who throw together some original recipes based around the hearty breakfast pairing.

Going live on social channels, the campaign is supported by out of home and a wrap cover sponsorship with this week’s Stylist magazine.

Chris Goulder, The Three Bears’ director, explained the casting was the most challenging, but the most crucial part of the process. “It was so important, finding these three guys that when they worked together seemed like they had this long history, that they had been flatmates forever and all the foibles that come along with that.”

The chosen three – Matt, Joel and Phil – each took on the traditional daddy, mummy and baby bear tropes to a certain extent, adding humour among the pre-requisites in the script. The original script itself was, incidentally, almost entirely discarded in favour of on-set improvisation from the cast.

“We never really set out to make a gay campaign,” explained Harry Boothman, one of the creatives behind the series. “We came up the idea of The Three Bears, and once we got to that it was about bringing that to life in a new way. It was just about finding a really lovely new tone.

“Also, to be completely honest, it was great to work with a new community who have been underrepresented in advertising.”

Rowse Honey hopes the success of the series online will lead to an expansion of the branded foodie programme, something that Jules Chalkley, chief creative officer at BMB, describes as “a much bigger entity that plays in to the nation’s deep love of cookery shows”.

Watch the video above to find out more about the creation of The Three Bears.

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Katie Deighton

Katie Deighton is The Drum’s senior reporter - creative and video based in London. She produces, films, presents and edits the title’s editorial video output, including series such as On The Scene, Ad Breakers and Why I Left Advertising, and manages its coverage of the creative sector. She also reports on the intersection between politics and marketing, as well as the third sector and fashion.

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