New MasterCard PayPass Creative to Debut on ABC Broadcast of 79th Annual Academy Awards and on

New MasterCard PayPass Creative to Debut on ABC Broadcast of 79th Annual Academy Awards and on

Jim Sheridan-directed spot to premiere during ABC Broadcast of the Academy Awards; to host star-studded vignettes demonstrating the speed and convenience of PayPass

Purchase, NY, February 20, 2007–MasterCard Worldwide® today announced it will debut a new ‘Priceless’ execution directed by acclaimed director Jim Sheridan during the broadcast of the 79th Annual Academy Awards on Sun., Feb. 25, on the ABC Television Network. The 60-second spot entitled, “Ella Phant” will promote MasterCard® PayPass™ contactless payment technology.

In the whimsical spot, an elephant cares for her under-the-weather zookeeper by tapping a PayPass card to make purchases–including such items as: soup, cold medicine and a blanket–to help her caretaker feel better. The spot is the third Sheridan has directed for MasterCard.

“I’m proud of the work I’ve done for MasterCard over the years and I’m particularly pleased with ‘Ella Phant’,” said Sheridan. “The campaign is about what matters most, so delivering something that is both emotional and genuine is always the challenge; and I think this spot truly captures that spirit.” celebrity vignettes

To accompany “Ella Phant” on-line, MasterCard will debut a series of vignettes featuring celebrities tapping to make purchases using PayPass cards. The tongue-in-cheek vignettes will live exclusively on beginning Feb. 23. In addition to viewing the humorous vignettes, consumers can also learn more about how PayPass works and how to get a card.

Among the stars featured at are: movie critic Gene Shalit buying movie tickets and popcorn; competitive eaters Takeru Kobayashi and Sonya Thomas (a.k.a. The Black Widow) buying hot dogs in a convenience store; Kyle MacDonald (a.k.a. Red Paperclip Guy) making a purchase at a drug store and “trading up” for higher-priced items; comedian David Cross hailing a cab while moving to his new apartment one block down the street; and professional football player Vinny Testaverde buying refreshments at a stadium during a football game.

“MasterCard is thrilled to be launching a host of creative to coincide with one of the most anticipated television events of the year,” said Amy Fuller, Group Executive, Americas Marketing for MasterCard Worldwide. “It will be an engaging experience for consumers to see a fantastic and compelling 60-second TV spot and then be able to log onto to view five others starring some familiar personalities, all in situations that warrant the use of PayPass.”

“Ella Phant” opens in a zoo with the zookeeper washing an elephant. It is clear that the zookeeper is ill. The elephant then picks up her MasterCard PayPass card and walks out of the zoo towards the city and into a deli/convenience store.

Voice over: Hot soup: $4
The elephant then taps the PayPass card on the reader. The elephant then moves onto the pharmacy.

Voice over: Cold Medicine: $11
The elephant then taps the PayPass card on the reader. The next scene shows the elephant purchasing a blanket.

Voice over: Blanket: $24
The elephant then taps the PayPass card on the reader. Finally the elephant is walking towards the zookeeper’s house holding a large shopping bag.

Voice over: Making it all better, priceless.
With PayPass on your MasterCard, just tap and go.

Sheridan, an acclaimed director and producer with film credits such as “My Left Foot,” “In America,” “In the Name of the Father,” and “Get Rich or Die Tryin’” to his name, also directed MasterCard spots entitled “Weekend House” and “Mother-Daughter.” Creative for MasterCard’s Priceless campaign is handled by McCann Erickson/New York: Joyce King Thomas, EVP, Chief Creative Officer; Pete Jones, SVP, Group Creative Director; Chris Cereda, VP, Associate Creative Director; and Greg Lotus, VP, Senior Producer. McCann Erickson sister company, MRM Worldwide, created the website.

How MasterCard PayPass Works

MasterCard PayPass uses radio frequency technology to transmit payment details wirelessly between the PayPass device and the merchant’s terminal. The transaction is then processed through the MasterCard network for authorization, clearing and settlement. PayPass cards include magnetic stripe technology, so the cards can also be used in the traditional manner anywhere MasterCard is accepted around the world. PayPass technology can also be used in a number of non-card devices, such as a convenient payment tag that fits on a key chain for easy access.

About MasterCard PayPass

MasterCard PayPass is ideal for traditional cash-heavy environments where speed is essential, and has led the way in bringing contactless technology to consumer categories such as quick serve restaurants, drug stores, gas stations, vending machines, convenience stores, sports arenas, movie theaters, transit systems and parking garages. There are currently nearly 13 million PayPass cards and devices in the market, and PayPass is currently accepted globally at 46,000 merchant locations, including participating 7-Eleven, CVS, McDonald’s, Regal Entertainment Group theaters and many others. PayPass is also accepted at numerous football and baseball stadiums. For more information about MasterCard PayPass and a full list of participating merchants, visit

About MasterCard Worldwide

MasterCard Worldwide advances global commerce by providing a critical economic link among financial institutions, businesses, cardholders and merchants worldwide. As a franchisor, processor and advisor, MasterCard develops and markets payment solutions, processes approximately 14 billion payments each year, and provides industry-leading analysis and consulting services to financial institution customers and merchants. Through its family of brands, including MasterCard®, Maestro® and Cirrus®, MasterCard Worldwide serves consumers and businesses in more than 210 countries and territories. For more information go to