Fey, Baldwin lend support to N.Y. ad campaign

Stars participating include Rachael Ray, Jets' Mark Sanchez

NEW YORK -- Tina Fey, Alec Baldwin, Rachael Ray and New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez are lending their pro-bono on-screen support to New York as a tourism destination in a new summer/fall TV ad campaign under the banner "I Love New York."

The state on Tuesday unveiled two 30-second TV spots with the celebrities -- along with 15-second promos featuring them individually -- produced by director Bob Giraldi.
 
State officials lauded the latest spot -- the first TV spot since 2006 -- for bringing together big names for pro-bono work at a time when the state is looking for tourism as a key part of its economic recovery strategy. "The commercial, film, and television industries has been incredibly supportive of New York State over the years," emphasized Pat Swinney Kaufman, executive director of the Governor's Office for Motion Picture and Television Development.

The "I Love New York" branding campaign was created in 1977 during the height of an economic crisis.

"Just like a generation ago when Frank Sinatra and other stars appeared in the now legendary 'I Love New York' commercials that forever changed the way states market tourism, New York's tourism industry is again at a defining moment," said Empire State Development chairman & CEO Dennis Mullen. "Thanks to the support of Bob Giraldi, our participating celebrities and other partners, we can continue to provide marketing support to bolster New York State's tourism economy."
 
Said Giraldi, who direct, among others, the music video to Michael Jackson's "Beat It" and the Pepsi ad campaign that featured Jackson and Lionel Richie: "New York State, especially in these challenging times, has to be joyful, able to laugh out loud, laugh at itself and, above all, remain positive while offering hope. I tried to make the spots suggest all that -- and more."
 
New York State's tourism sector supported more than 660,000 jobs in 2009 and generated $46 billion in visitor spending and nearly $13 billion in tax revenue, according to the state.
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