Super Bowl

Honda Signs Celebs to Stoke Super Bowl Ads

Jerry Seinfeld Pitches Acura and Oh, Yeah, It's the CR-V That Matthew Broderick's Shilling

By Published on .

Is Ferris Bueller this year's Darth Vader? Is Jerry Seinfeld?

There's no Ferrari 250GT California Spyder in "Matthew's Day Off," the Super Bowl spot planned by American Honda for its new CR-V, but a grownup Matthew Broderick reprises his role in the 1986 comedy classic as a convincing truant who's faking a cold to take the day off from working at the studio. The auto behind the ad has been the subject of much online conjecture since a teaser spot began running on YouTube late last week.

The extended two-and-a-half minute version released today will be cut to 60 seconds for the game; the campaign was created by longtime American Honda agency RPA, Santa Monica, Calif.

The commercial was directed by Todd Phillips, known for his work on "The Hangover" and "Old School." The music for the spot is , appropriately, "Oh Yeah," by Yello.

Also booked for the game is a 60-second ad for Acura, Honda's high-end subsidiary brand, that will feature comedian Jerry Seinfeld going to absurd lengths to bribe the man who holds the rights to buy the first 2015 Acura NSX supercar. It was created by RP&, a division of RPA.

The Acura spot will run during the third quarter and the CR-V spot at the end of the third quarter.

"We want to entertain an audience, engage them into the brand and generate buzz and excitement," Mike Accavitti, chief marketing officer at American Honda, told Automotive News. "Ferris' whole thing was to smell the roses because life moves pretty fast," Mr. Accavitti said. "While our competitors are suggesting people use cars to escape life, we're saying, 'Go embrace it; have some fun.' "

The Acura spot with Mr. Seinfeld, whose affection for high-end sports cars is well-known, was directed by Craig Gillespie, who made the Snickers "Betty White" spot in which America's then-octogenarian sweetheart appeared to be slammed to the turf.

Mr. Seinfeld contributed substantial creative assistance in the final cut, Mr. Accavitti told Automotive News. "This is an unprecedented time in our history," Mr. Accavitti said. "We needed to get Acura noticed."

Defending Honda's multimillion-dollar investment in the Super Bowl, Mr. Accavitti said, "Everything we do, we measure and analyze. So while Super Bowl ads are expensive endeavors, the reach you get, if done correctly, the lead-up and long-tail follow-up take the [cost-per-million viewers] below normal TV levels."
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