Fox Sports teamed up with Russian musicians to create an original theme song for the 2018 FIFA World Cup in Moscow, and revealed marketing initiatives and coverage plans across the network’s TV, digital and social platforms leading up to, and during, the international soccer tournament.
Fox Sports is the official English-language broadcaster of the event.
The campaign celebrates a 100-day countdown to the month-long event, from June 14 - July 15, and launched with the debut of Fox Sports’ original theme song “Where Angels Fear to Tread,” created through a partnership with Russian neoclassical pianist and composer Kirill Richter.
Featured in a trailer (above), the song is influenced by Russian culture, and Richter’s composition is comprised of bold, complex and emotionally-charged passages using a 23-piece orchestra, featuring strings, trumpets, cornets and a piano, according to the network. The piece was recorded in Moscow.
“We are delighted to kick off the celebration by unveiling Kirill’s extraordinary Fox Sports World Cup theme music, rolling out the digital and social campaigns and implementing company-wide initiatives, helping to build momentum before the tournament begins on June 14,” said David Neal, executive producer of FIFA World Cup on Fox and vice president of production for Fox Sports.
- Leading up to the event, Fox Sports’ campaign includes a 20-second World Cup promo, and a minute-long World Cup supertease for social and digital platforms.
- On-air assets for the countdown include tickers, watermarks and snipes.
- As part of the 100-day countdown celebration, Fox Sports’ digital team created a “100 Most Memorable FIFA World Cup Moments” campaign, as well as a weekly minute-long video segment, “Road to Russia,” featuring this year’s World Cup hopefuls.
- In addition, Fox Sports’ features team worked with National Geographic photographers and journalists to produce “100 FIFA World Cup” features and video essays that tell 32 compelling and inspiring stories of the athletes and teams participating in the tournament, and place the spotlight on Russia’s cities, culture and people. These will premiere on June 14 during coverage of the opening match.
- During the event, Fox Sports will post highlights on Twitter for every single goal scored throughout the tournament, and will also debut a live show, hosted by Rachel Bonnetta, for each match.
- Russian journalist and Fox Sports reporter Maria Komandnaya will also be in Moscow’s iconic Red Square – the site of Fox Sports’ World Cup studio—as part of the 30-second primetime promotional “road block” expected to air at 8 p.m. ET across the Fox Network Group broadcast and cable networks including Fox, FS1, FX, National Geographic, local Fox affiliates, Fox regional sports networks and Fox Deportes.
- On Snapchat’s Fox Sports Publisher Stories, the network will chronicle the day-to-day drama of the tournament, and will also feature a series of Our Stories posts with a combination of fan-generated content and Fox Sports broadcast highlights.
- Online, FoxSports.com will include a World Cup index page with a fan guide, and special Red Square editions of the “Alexi Lalas’ State of the Union” podcast.
- Lalas, a U.S. Soccer Hall of Famer, also will ring NASDAQ’s opening bell at 9:30 a.m. ET, along with broadcaster Fernando Fiore and studio host Rob Stone as the World Cup kicks off.
- Fiore will host the nightly recap show World Cup Tonight, with Russian musician, producer and DJ Leonid Rudenko joining the show as the resident DJ throughout the tournament.
- In addition, special pregame content will be featured in the online video segment Who You Got? and postgame highlights will appear in the online video segment 90’ in 90” which sums up the 90-minute games in 90 seconds. These will launch for the first match, and be distributed across Fox Sports’ website, app and social handles.
- When it comes to actually watching the tournament itself, all matches will be available live online and on the Fox Sports Go app.
- Fox Sports will also debut a digital billboard in Times Square for the event.