Hennessy ad campaign gets Wilder

'Lost Weekend' borrows Oscar-winning title

This is definitely not Billy Wilder territory.

An ad campaign for Hennessy cognac, dubbed “Flaunt Your Taste,” featured a 90-second short called “The Lost Weekend” — also the title of Wilder’s 1945 Oscar-winning drama about a troubled writer’s weekend-long alcoholic bender.

Not surprisingly, the Hennessy short is a decidedly more indulgent view of imbibing. It features, among others, former “Perfect 10” model Marta Zurkowska and Austrian actor Werner Schreyer partying in and around an opulent mansion to the strains of hip-hop artist Pharrell Williams‘ music.

Wilder’s adaptation of Charles R. Jackson’s novel, on the other hand, chronicles the drunken descent of writer Don Birnam (Ray Milland) into begging, theft and incarceration in the psych ward at Bellevue.

The title of the Hennessy short has been hastily changed to “Le Weekend,” which a source at ad agency Berlin Cameron United says was intended to “emphasize the French-ness” of the setting. But print and online ads with the original title are still ubiquitous, appearing in Vibe, GQ, and Vanity Fair.

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