By Barry Janoff
September 4, 2014: On the first day of the 2014 NFL season, with the Big Game five months away, PepsiCo has unveiled details for the ninth iteration of its Dorito's "Crash the Super Bowl" promotion.
Dorito's is again offering a big money prize to the winner — $1 million — and a trip to the game in the University of Phoenix Stadium, but this time has added a fresh bonus: To work for a full year onsite as a contractor at Universal Pictures.
Although most campaigns never reach this type of longevity, PepsiCo has major reasons to keep it going and to keep reinvigorating it.
Since its introduction in 2007, the campaign has received more than 27,000 consumer-created ad submissions "with contest winners consistently ranking among the most memorable and buzzed-about Super Bowl commercials," according to the company. In total, creators of winning Doritos ads have been awarded "millions of dollars in grand prize money and have gone on to receive commercial work, film deals, Hollywood talent representation and other life-changing experiences."
Last year was the first time the event was open to people from participating countries around the world, resulting in more than 5,400 entries from 30 countries. Ryan Thomas Anderson, a freelance wedding photographer from Scottsdale, Ariz., submitted the winning entry, "Time Machine." He was awarded $1 million and had the opportunity to work with Marvel Studios on the set of The Avengers: The Age of Ultron.
According to Doritos, this year's winner will have a chance to work with actress Elizabeth Banks, who will be making her directorial debut on Pitch Perfect 2, as well as a variety of other Universal projects,
One other significant perk: The winning "Crash the Super Bowl" spot will air on NBC during Super Bowl XLIX on Feb. 1 before an audience of some 100 million viewers in the U.S. and millions more worldwide before going into regular rotation.
A launch 60-second promo spot proclaims, "For eight years, Doritos' fans have created incredible ads to 'Crash the Super Bowl.' Last year, we went global. This year, we're going Universal. One fan will score a dream job with Universal Pictures and help bring major motion pictures to life. Plus they will win a guaranteed $1 million and see their ad aired during the Super Bowl. It's time to make a bold career move. Turn your dream job into reality. (Full details here.)
The ad emphasizes its message with dramatic Hollywood music played out to scenes from such Universal productions as King Kong, Back to the Future, E.T., Jurassic Park and Fast & Furious. (See the full spot here.)
Initial support includes Internet and such social media destinations as Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.
"The Doritos 'Crash the Super Bowl' contest has a tremendous legacy of engaging bold Doritos fans in the U.S. and the brand is thrilled to bring this renowned program to international markets," Lorraine Chow Hansen, president, Global Snacks Group, for PepsiCo, said in a statement. "This career-launching opportunity for aspiring filmmakers highlights the amazing creativity of Doritos consumers and we know our fans around the world are up to the challenge."
Submissions will be judged by a panel to include Banks, executives from the Doritos brand and ad pros. There will be ten finalist ads, twice as many as last year. The top two will air during the Super Bowl, one selected by fan votes and the other by the Doritos brand.
According to Chow Hansen, "The chance to have their talents showcased during one of the biggest sporting events of the year, win an incredible $1 million prize and work onsite at one of the most renowned movie studios in the world has raised the bar once again for fans to create the ultimate Doritos commercial. We can't wait to see what they deliver."
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