PLANO, Texas - Doritos tortilla chips – the bold, intense snack brand within PepsiCo’s Frito-Lay division – put four of its talented fans in the limelight tonight when it aired four consumer-created Doritos commercials -- “Casket,” “House Rules,” “Snack Attack Samurai” and “Underdog” -- during the Super Bowl XLIV broadcast. Nationwide consumer votes from this year’s Doritos “Crash the Super Bowl” program determined the winners from six finalists, all of whom now have realized a dream come true, and taken a huge leap forward in pursuing their passions.
Originally planned for just three consumer-created ads to air, Crash the Super Bowl’s unprecedented level of consumer excitement and attention this year, along with the impressive creativity of all of the finalists, led the brand to its bold decision to air a fourth consumer-created spot, which also is eligible for the potential grand prizes. The four winning ads (in alphabetical order) are:
*“Casket” by Erwin McManus of Whittier, CA
*“House Rules” by Joelle De Jesus of Hollywood, CA
*“Snack Attack Samurai” by Ben Krueger of Minneapolis, MN
*“Underdog” by Joshua Svoboda of Raleigh, NC
Now, McManus, De Jesus, Krueger and Svoboda have their eyes on one more prize. A potential $5 million bonus is on the line that could be shared if three of the homemade ads claim the top-three spots of the USA TODAY Ad Meter, beating the advertising pros that traditionally dominate the rankings. Last year, Joe and Dave Herbert, two unemployed brothers from Batesville, Indiana, stunned the world when their Crash the Super Bowl ad, “Free Doritos,” took the number one spot on the Ad Meter, winning them $1 million.
This year, all six finalists already have received $25,000 and a trip to the Super Bowl. Potential grand prizes are based on how each of the winning Doritos ads rank on the USA TODAY Ad Meter:
*$1 million will be awarded for an ad that scores number one on the Ad Meter
*$600,000 will be awarded for an ad that scores number two on the Ad Meter
*$400,000 will be awarded for an ad that scores number three on the Ad Meter
If consumer-created Doritos ads sweep all top-three rankings of the USA TODAY Ad Meter, an additional $1 million bonus will be awarded to each top-three placer for a total prize giveaway of $5 million, making the hours ahead filled with excitement and anticipation of what’s to come.
“Time and time again our fans have proven they have the creativity and talent to match up against the best in the advertising business, and we couldn’t be more thrilled for this year’s Crash the Super Bowl winners” said Rudy Wilson, vice president, marketing, Frito-Lay. “It’s always an exciting moment in a person’s life when they achieve an accomplishment that never seemed possible, and we are extremely proud that we could share that moment with a truly special group of Doritos fans tonight.”
“Casket,” “House Rules,” “Snack Attack Samurai” and “Underdog” were four of the six top ads selected by the Doritos brand from more than 4,000 submissions, and voted on by consumers for the chance to air during this year’s Super Bowl broadcast. Thousands of fans voted at http://www.crashthesuperbowl.com/ between Jan. 5 and Jan. 31 to determine the winner.
The brand also announced tonight that it will continue to shine the spotlight on each of its six finalists and their budding careers beyond the Super Bowl by airing all six finalist commercials as a 2010 television advertising campaign. In addition to “Casket,” “House Rules,” “Snack Attack Samurai” and “Underdog,” the other finalists’ ads – “Kids These Days” and “The Smackout” will be at the center of Doritos’ new campaign.
Erwin McManus, a pastor from Whittier, CA and his church congregation came together to take a shot at Madison Avenue fame by entering the Doritos “Crash the Super Bowl” contest. A true optimist, Erwin has been preaching to people about following their dreams for years. “Casket” was inspired by a friend’s Mid-West funeral experience where the deceased requested to be buried with untraditional items. One to pull inspiration from different sources, Erwin took this story and put his own big, bold twist to it. The result is “Casket” – a commercial in which a man fakes his own death to be buried with hundreds of free Doritos chips.
A world traveler and linguist, Joelle De Jesus also has a knack for writing and filmmaking. After leaving a lucrative career as a language interpreter to pursue his passion for writing and filmmaking, the 37-year-old stumbled upon casting calls for Doritos commercials and realized Doritos “Crash the Super Bowl” was a contest he needed to enter. “House Rules,” which was made for only $80, revolves around a man who comes to pick up his date and finds that he has to win over her son while he waits for her to finish getting ready. The only problem is the boy doesn’t want him to have anything to do with his mom or his Doritos chips – resulting in Super Bowl-sized comedy.
Ben Krueger, a 32-year-old freelance production assistant and aspiring filmmaker from Minneapolis, MN, was inspired to enter Doritos “Crash the Super Bowl” contest after seeing the exposure Joe and Dave Herbert garnered last year. With a great sense of humor, Ben decided to go the comedic route. He felt that a Doritos Samurai would make a memorable character that would resonate well with the Super Bowl audience. Ben and his friends spent three days making thousands of foam “Doritos” chips for a one-of-its-kind samurai suit and worked with a bare bones budget of less than $1,000.
Always passionate about filmmaking, 24-year-old Joshua Svoboda knew it was his time to shine when he heard about Doritos “Crash the Super Bowl.” A native of Raleigh, NC, Josh entered the contest for a chance to take one of the top three Ad Meter spots and turn his childhood dreams into reality. Over the course of three days and working with a shoestring budget of $200, Joshua cast a friend’s untrained dog as the star of his commercial. The spot takes place in a park in which “man’s best friend” turns the tables on an obnoxious snacker who refuses to share his Doritos chips.
The USA TODAY Super Bowl Ad Meter tracks the second-by-second responses of a panel of viewers to ads during the national broadcast of the Super Bowl and ranks them favorite to least favorite. Created in 1989, USA TODAY’s Ad Meter has been regarded as the most influential Super Bowl ad rating in the advertising industry.
Crash the Super Bowl is one of many ways the Doritos brand continues to turn control over to consumers. The brand’s commitment to fan-empowerment began with the Doritos “Crash the Super Bowl” program, which started in 2007 and has turned the brand’s Super Bowl advertising over to its fans every year. In addition, Doritos has put consumers in control through a variety of other exciting opportunities, including its “Unlock Xbox” challenge where fans compete to have their Xbox LIVE® Arcade game concept developed and made available for download worldwide; and “Doritos Late Night,” which provided Doritos fans ground-breaking virtual musical performances by blink-182 and Big Boi through the power of augmented reality technology where fans could enjoy and control the performances in the palm of their hand.
Frito-Lay North America is the $12 billion convenient foods business unit of PepsiCo (NYSE: PEP), which is headquartered in Purchase, NY. In addition to Frito-Lay, PepsiCo business units include Pepsi-Cola, Quaker Foods, Gatorade and Tropicana. Learn more about Frito-Lay at the corporate Web site, http://www.fritolay.com/, the Snack Chat blog, http://www.snacks.com/ and on Twitter at www.twitter.com/fritolay.
PepsiCo offers the world’s largest portfolio of billion-dollar food and beverage brands, including 18 different product lines that each generate more than $1 billion in annual retail sales. Our main businesses – Frito-Lay, Quaker, Pepsi-Cola, Tropicana and Gatorade – also make hundreds of other nourishing, tasty foods and drinks that bring joy to our consumers in over 200 countries. With more than $43 billion in 2008 revenues, PepsiCo employs 198,000 people who are united by our unique commitment to sustainable growth, called Performance with Purpose. By dedicating ourselves to offering a broad array of choices for healthy, convenient and fun nourishment, reducing our environmental impact, and fostering a diverse and inclusive workplace culture, PepsiCo balances strong financial returns with giving back to our communities worldwide. For more information, please visit www.pepsico.com.