Super Bowl Car Ads Enlist Christopher Walken, Ryan Reynolds, Kevin Hart and More
Celebrity-laden ads from Hyundai, BMW's Mini are generating the most buzz online ahead of the big game.
Of the nine car manufacturers airing spots during Super Bowl 50, Kia, Hyundai, Mini and Buick have tapped Hollywood talent ranging from Christopher Walken to Steven Spielberg cinematographer Janusz Kaminski.
Kia's "Walken Closet," created by the David&Goliath agency, depicts the actor confronting a man searching for a pair of beige socks in his closet. Walken is the emphatic voice behind previously aired spots for the 2016 Optima that frame the car as an antidote to the blandness and conformity of the mid-sized sedan category. In the 60-second Super Bowl ad, scheduled to run during the third quarter, Walken wields a sock puppet along with his signature unhinged intensity.
Hyundai is running no less than four Super Bowl ads, created by the Innocean Worldwide agency. "First Date," a 60-second pre-game spot directed by Friday Night Lights' Peter Berg, stars Kevin Hart as meddlesome father tracking his daughter's first date through Hyundai's car finder.
Berg also directed "Ryanville," a 30-second spot to air during the second quarter that features a woman driver distracted by Ryan Reynolds appearing in various guises. In "The Chase," directed by Kaminski and Aaron Stoller of Biscuit Filmworks, a couple is pursued by bears through a forest and escape thanks to the Hyundai Elantra's voice-activated remote start.
BMW's Mini will air "Defy Labels" during the game, with Harvey Keitel, Serena Williams, rapper T-Pain, retired pitcher Randy Johnson and skateboard champion Tony Hawk. The 30-second spot, created by Butler, Shine, Stern & Partners for Mini's revamped Clubman model, is meant to dispel the perception that Mini only manufactures tiny cars. Mini posted extended footage with Keitel and the others ahead of the game.
David Bowie's 1972 song "Starman" makes an appearance in Audi's "The Commander," in which a retired astronaut reclaims his mojo after driving Audi's R8 V10 Plus supercar, and Van Halen's "Runnin' with the Devil is the soundtrack to Acura's ad for the RSX supercar, the first time the classic rock warhorse has been used in an advertisement.
As of Thursday, Hyuadai's "Ryanville" was the fourth most popular Super Bowl 50 ad online, according to research by iSpot.TV. Mini's "Defy Labels" was No. 5 and "First Date" was No. 9.
GM's resurgent Buick division tapped Gone Girl actress and Sports Illustrated swimsuit model Emily Ratajkowski and New York Giants wide receive Odell Beckham Jr. for its first-ever Super Bowl ad, tub-thumping Buick's new Cascada convertible.
Super Bowl 50 airs Feb. 7 on CBS.