Thursday, February 22, 2024

George Parker: Ted Bell – Y&R adman turned author

Information this week that Ted Bell, famed Advert Man who became an much more well-known writer, died in January on the age of 76. I labored with Ted for 3 years once I perma-lanced on Xerox and different accounts at Y&R, New York, and he was Artistic Director.

To be sincere, I used to be not a fan of Ted’s, although he had made his popularity at DDB and Leo Burnett with some good work. However these days have been lengthy gone, and it was apparent that he was extra all in favour of pursuing his writing profession because the writer of spy thrillers that includes Alex Hawke, a British billionaire undercover agent, which was an apparent “Homage” to Ian Fleming’s James Bond, although Bond was by no means a billionaire, however he definitely pulled the birds.

Certainly one of Ted’s favourite quotes was… “The one motive we’re on this enterprise is to promote.” One other homage, this one to David Ogilvy. The members of the inventive division used to consult with him as “Commodore Bell.” (To not his face) This as a result of he was a member of the uber-expensive Greenwich Yacht Membership, and sure, he had a yacht.

His workplace was adorned with footage of him shaking arms with everybody from President Reagan to the Pope. Maybe an homage to Inspector Clouseau’ s workplace. We at all times suspected, as within the motion pictures, these had been photoshopped. On the finish of 1999 he instructed Ed Vick, then the Chairman and CEO of Y&R he was taking a few months off to do a bit of private writing. He by no means got here again and shortly thereafter; his first of fifteen Alex Hawke novels was revealed by Simon & Schuster and he trousered tens of millions.

Which matches to show, you don’t must be Salman Rushdie to make the change.

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