By Anne Brockhoff

SKYY Blue will make its television debut Thursday as Miller Brewing Co. and Skyy Spirits launch their first advertising campaign for the flavoured malt beverage since they teamed up in January to develop it.

The ads will appear during the NCAA basketball tournament, then continue on primetime and late-night network and cable television through the summer, Miller spokeswoman Molly Reilly said.

A series of three spots were directed by Bryan Singer, best known for directing movies including The Usual Suspects and X-Men, and feature music from French club favorite Gotan Project.

"It was essential that this series of ads capture not only the relaxed, sophisticated style of the product, but also the cultural interests of flavoured malt beverage drinkers," Ann Stickler, director strategy and new business development for Miller, said in a statement.

The campaign targets 21- to 27-year-olds - the consumer category so far responsible for driving the success of flavoured malt beverages, or
"malternatives," in the US, Reilly said.

Print ads for SKYY Blue will appear in the May issues of Stuff, Cosmopolitan and other magazines. Out-of-home support, such as ads at bus stops, will appear in major markets from April to October.

Skyy Spirits, the maker of SKYY vodka, and Miller are together investing $42 million in developing and marketing SKYY Blue, Reilly said.