Super Bowl Ads Put Celebrities in Frenzied Field of Play

Variety | 2/2/2019 | Brian Steinberg
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Kristin Chenoweth, Sarah Michelle Gellar and Charlie Sheen are all vying for the same job on Super Bowl Sunday.

Each will try to get it done in a different way. Gellar will display amazing range, going from frightened out of her wits to calm and confident – all in the space of 30 seconds. Chenoweth will use quirky humor to get people laughing quickly, working with a range of talented dogs to assist her with the task. And Sheen will utter a single line that he hopes will keep people riveted to their screens.

Actors - Roles - Super - Bowl - Commercials

The three actors play big roles in three different Super Bowl commercials. Gellar will hold forth for Procter & Gamble’s Olay. Chenoweth takes to the ad field for Avocados of Mexico. And Sheen makes a pivotal cameo for Kraft Heinz’ Planters. While the use of celebrities in these big annual Madison Avenue pitches is as familiar as the football they support, the pressure on each actor to help their specific ad stand apart from dozens of others featured during the Super Bowl broadcast is fresh every year.

“You have a company that is relying on you for 30 seconds of airtime to make an impact in a very crowded marketplace,” says Gellar, in an interview.

Burden - Actors - Super - Bowl - Millions

That’s not the only burden placed on familiar actors during the Super Bowl. Millions of dollars are at stake. CBS, which will broadcast Super Bowl LIII from Atlanta on Sunday, is seeking between $5.1 million and $5.3 million for a Big Game ad package this year. The celebrities are often called upon to serve as ambassadors for the social messages or benefits associated with the products the marketers are trying to sell.

And there’s a chance the commercial in which they star might circulate for a long time – even decades. Ask “Mean” Joe Greene, the...
(Excerpt) Read more at: Variety
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