Capitalizing on the momentum from its standout Super Bowl Sunday ad, Tourism Australia this week rolled out the second phase of its campaign, which centers on a fictitious reboot of the Crocodile Dundee movie franchise.
The premise of this fall's "Visit the Set of Dundee: Son of a Legend" campaign is to take U.S. travelers on a tour of the "Dundee movie backlot," while in reality showcasing national parks and other attractions throughout the country.
Whereas February's Super Bowl ad starred Danny McBride ("Eastbound and Down") and Chris Hemsworth ("Thor") along with cameos by Australian celebrities Hugh Jackman ("X-Men"), Margot Robbie ("The Wolf of Wall Street") and others, the campaign's second phase features Hemsworth's brother Luke ("Westworld") as a khaki-clad "tour guide" on location about two hours outside of Alice Springs, in the country's Northern Territory.
(Chris Hemsworth does appear in the video, in the form of a cardboard cutout riding alongside Luke in a golf cart emblazoned with the faux movie's logo.)
In the 90-second version of the commercial, Hemsworth knocks on a particularly picturesque rock formation. "How do they make it look so real?" he says. "Just incredible."
For Hemsworth, a native of Victoria state in southeastern Australia, the video's location shoot offered an opportunity to showcase the country's interior.
"You're just struck with the awesome vastness and silence," he said in an interview with Travel Weekly. "I think people think of Australia as being all beaches, but there's a lot of incredible countryside in the middle that needs to be shown."
Hemsworth said his participation in the campaign was "a no-brainer," and offered his view on why the Crocodile Dundee character, portrayed by Paul Hogan in the hit 1986 film, continues to resonate with American and Australian audiences alike.
"I think we feel as an audience that we all have a piece of Crocodile Dundee, because he was iconically Australian but he also spent a lot of time in New York," he said. "And you then throw in Chris Hemsworth and Danny McBride and the rest of the Super Bowl alumni into the mix, it becomes something that piques everyone's interest."
The campaign's Super Bowl ad reached over 100 million American TV viewers.
In a statement, John O'Sullivan, Tourism Australia managing director, said: "The Dundee campaign has already been well received by the tourism industry and our partners in market, so it is crucial that we maintain the momentum it generated and continue to capture the attention of high-value American travelers."
The U.S. is Australia's third-largest source market, after China and New Zealand: Last year, 781,000 visitors arrived from the U.S., a 9% increase. Australia's international arrivals totaled over 8.8 million in 2017, a 6.5% increase.