Super Sunday is upon us — and with it, Madison Avenue’s annual spending spree, which has seen the big game’s Hollywood quotient rise significantly in recent years.
Celebrity product pitches certainly date back to the days of leather helmets, but in the increasingly rarefied air of the Super Bowl they’ve begun to outshine the left-field breakouts of yesteryear by the likes of the puppy monkey baby or the beer-loving frog. . With Fox’s top tier commanding more than $7 million for telecast 30-second spots, producers and brands are once again banking on stars in a big way. Super Bowl LVII, a contest in Arizona between the Philadelphia Eagles and the Kansas City Chiefs, will feature commercials starring Will Ferrell, Melissa McCarthy, Miles and Kleigh Teller, and Sylvester Stallone, among others. Bryan Cranston and Aaron Paul reteam as them breaking bad Letters for plugging popcorns. Brian Cox joins a list of A-list athletes to riff on CaddyshackAnd Alicia Silverstone leads a full-blown mini-remake unknown. (See commercials below, many online spots running longer than aired game time.)
While nachos and guacamole were being prepared for this year’s game, Kanter’s Vivix revealed some eye-popping stats from last year’s Super Bowl. Advertising rates for in-game spots, the research firm said, were $6.5 million for 30 seconds, up from $4.5 million in 2017. Total revenue, accordingly, rose 33% in 2022 compared to 2021, reaching $578.36 million for NBCUniversal. (NBCU, Paramount and Fox are in a three-way rotation for Big Game.)
With all those dollars on the line, brands are looking to Hollywood as a way to stand out in what will hopefully be a raucous evening.
Brian Buckley, a top director of Super Bowl commercials with dozens of game-day credits since 1999, weighed in on the changing use of celebrities during a recent interview. HBO’s Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel. “When I first got into it, there were some high-end celebrities but a lot of washed-up celebrities wanted to reinvent themselves at the Super Bowl,” he said. “Now, it’s A-listers across the board.” On the efficacy of big-name collections, he added: “It’s proven to work. You just need celebrities that people want to talk about.”
Here are the advertisers and names hoping to inspire conversation Sunday and beyond:
MichaelB Ultra: Brian Cox, Tony Romo, Serena Williams, Alex Morgan, Canelo Alvarez and Neka Ogwumike
A montage of detailed tributes may resonate with fans of the enduring 1980s golf comedy.
Popcorners: Bryan Cranston, Aaron Paul and Raymond Cruz
Like the Michelob Ultra commercial above, some of the signature elements of AMC’s fictional drama breaking bad This has been excluded from the loophole. Is it possible that the show was shut down for good almost a decade ago?!
Booking.com: Melissa McCarthy
The comedy star lends his voice to the song, succeeding Idris Elba as the Super Bowl pitcher on the travel site.
Rakuten: Alicia Silverstone
Extending the game-day trend of film tributes, Silverstone’s character Cher is back. (Note to CBS, which is carrying the 2024 Super Bowl: Why not an Avengers-style crossover of all these nostalgia acts??)
Bud Light: Miles and Kelly Taylor
Hold music can be a drag, especially when your wait for customer service can be measured in hours, not minutes. Miles and Keleigh Teller make the most of their hold time, happily awkward dancing to canned beats while enjoying a Bud Light.
Paramount+: Sylvester Stallone and Family
Serving as marketing for new unscripted series besides approaching new customers The Stallone FamilyAdvertising does a trifecta by reminding some viewers Tulsa King Star roles in action movies The cliffhanger.
Downey: Danny McBride
Multihyphenate announces that she is changing her name to “Downey” after smelling laundry products.
Bush: Sarah McLachlan
For McLachlan’s legendary support of animal causes, the beer brand used his song “Angel” to give the Canadian musician an alternative definition of the word “shelter.”
Netflix and General Motors: Will Ferrell
This 15-second teaser for the 60-second ad during the game promotes a new partnership between the automaker and the streaming service.