The US Department of Health and Human Services is poised to unleash characters from Maurice Sendak's classic "Where the Wild Things Are" to help fight childhood overweight and obesity.
New TV, radio, print, outdoor and Internet ads featuring characters and scenes from the film "Where the Wild Things Are", which is due to be released in cinemas next month, will be distributed this week to media around the United States.
The campaign promotes the benefits of physical exercise and encourages children to start their own 'Wild Rumpus', just as "Where the Wild Things Are" hero Max did in the book, by making time every day for play.
The ads continue a collaborative effort against obesity by the Ad Council and Health Department which was launched in 2005 and has already featured characters from "Shrek" as well as American football players urging children to "be a player" and be physically active for an hour a day.
A study published last year in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) found that nearly 32 percent of US children were overweight and 16 percent were obese.
The obesity rate tripled between 1980-1999, creating an epidemic blamed on a poor diet heavy on fat and sugar with little consumption of fruits and fresh vegetables and lack of exercise, the report in JAMA said.
Obese children are at a higher risk of developing heart disease, high cholesterol and type 2 diabetes. They are also more likely to become obese adults.