SuperBowl or Bust (Doritos Finalists Announced)

Well, there you have it. The horses are out of the barn and galloping their way to Doritos and Superbowl fame, or at least that’s the goal. I get nostalgic this time of year during the CRASH. I remember what it was like as a finalist, to campaign like a zombie day and night during the vote-getting phase of the contest. At the time, I was so ill-equipped to compete with my fellow finalists. In fact, I had used/owned a computer just a single year and owned a cell phone for only two years prior to the inaugural CTSB. Born in 1964 I am on the cusp of the baby-boomer generation. A generation which has not embraced the internet (or other communication technologies) in the way subsequent generations have. I almost missed the boat, but eventually joined the .com insanity with the rest of the world. Not sure if I am better off now than I was 7 years ago, but I have certainly been changed forever.

These five CTSB finalists (production teams) are about to embark on a life changing whirlwind odyssey, whether or not they prevail in being broadcast during the Superbowl. I remember being so bummed out discovering I came in last place in ‘votes’ and that my commercial wasn’t played during the big game. But then pleasantly discovered that Doritos liked our spots enough to run them as regular advertisement throughout the year. I remember the opporutnites that came from scoring my first national commercial. Lot’s of good things happened which eventually allowed the creation of Jared Cicon Films. So, win or lose on the SuperBowl stage, these finalists are already winners.

I was happy to see that two of my five choices for finalists made the Doritos top five: Bird Of Prey and Man’s Best Friend. And yes, though all of the spots are good commercials, IMO, better spots were passed over (no disrespect to the final five).

I am however smart enough to know that just because ‘The King’, on any given matter, thinks something is awesome, doesn’t mean that all of the remaining ‘non’ good-looking-chubby-white-boys-father-of-four-former-east-coast-rock-star-wannabee-baby-boomers will feel the same way, or that they are wrong. heck, it might just be this sole good-looking-chubby-white-boy who is occasionally wrong. After all, my experience in life is singular and so too are the resulting opinions from those experiences. It is why I am such a big proponent of peer review.

What is painfully clear is that all of the finalists chosen by Doritos over the years (and how well they have done on the Ad Meter) bears out that Doritos knows what the they are doing. No one can dispute this.

You don’t do as well in the USA Today Ad meter as often as Doritos has, without knowing what the h**l you are doing in the matter.

It’s funny, just a few minutes after the five finalists were announced, my phone started ‘texting’ off the hook. Peers and friends were lamenting the choices made by Doritos, and venting their frustrations verbally this-away-and-that-away. As predicted they would be, most were unhappy with the final five. Opinions are like fish in the see. countless and many still undiscovered. There is even a fellow blogger by the name of Dan Lamoureux (VideoContestNews) who is hemming and hawwing about how unfair the process is and why people should and shouldn’t have been chosen as finalists, using criteria other than how well they would do on the USA Today Ad Meter. I really wish people like Danny could step back for a second and listen to how pathetic their arguments sound. My pig pet peeve with bloggers like Danny Lamoureux, is that too many of you fellow creative peers who might otherwise go about progressing in positive and productive ways, read drivel like his and mistakenly create mental crutches to fall back on when things don’t go the way you’d like in contests and other freelance matters. In an ever increasing competitive creative fraternity, there is no time for either crutches or drivel.

Doritos, doesn’t care if you are a rank amateur (like I was my first year), or a veteran in the film industry (Kristin Dehnert that same first year), or somewhere in between (Billy Federighi & Brett Snyder the first year). Doritos doesn’t care if you come to the Doritos gas station in a Lamborghini or a mo-ped. They just want you….need you to perform on the highest level possible.


Let that sink in for a minute people……and then learn to embrace it. You otherwise chance finding yourself operating from a perpetual piss & moan disposition that could stunt your creative growth and sour you on what is still the greatest opportunity for freelancers bar none world wide. The advertising world has been changing before us for several years now (in large part because of what Doritos introduced). We don’t have time, nor is it helpful to complain about the part of our cup that is yet empty.

Video Contest News (VCN) presents the argument that past finalists shouldn’t be allowed to re-enter the CTSB once they win…., and/or shouldn’t be awarded subsequent years because it’s unfair to win more than once…………

Danny Lamoureux, (editor for the VCN) suggests that hose creatives who have shown skill at nailing the ‘creative brief’ (and BTW helped Doritos with their program’s success) should be barred from entering and/or prevailing in the contest a 2nd time. I don’t subscribe to this kind of narcissistic frustration. It flies in the face of why great things become ‘great’ in the world. It definitely isn’t the premise upon which America was built from the Industrial Revolution forward. It is similar to the mamby-pamby liberal perspective that there should be some arbitrary leveling of the playing field when a certain person or people feel disenfranchised because they can’t compete in any desired field. Is Danny suggesting we institute a sort of ‘Affirmative Action’ for the contest world? Oh yeah, the rest of the advertising world would just love that. That would ‘really’ provide formidable competition to the balance of the advertising industry where no such constraint exists.

Barring past finalists would be akin to the jealous fraternity of creatives at the Director’s Guild barring Stephen Spielberg from producing E.T., becasue he already had his hit with Close Encounters. And….he definitely should not have had the right to steal a disproportianate amount of box office revenue with Indiana Jones, Schindler’s List, Super Eight, etc. etc. etc… How dare he. If Danny had his way, he would explain that Mr. Spielberg is now so well connected, as a result of his past success, that there is no way for his content to compete. the only solution is to bar/censor Mr. Spielberg.

Absurd. Funny too, because after reading a blog post he penned titled “No Fair, You Used Your Skills“, it appears Danny Lamoureux is conflicted on the issue.

Doritos doesn’t even trust themselves when choosing finalists for the CTSB. Did you hear what I just wrote?


Doritos will select the 25-100 submissions from the gallery that fit the brand requirements for comedy, demographic, image. They then put these spots in front of test market groups in an environment very, VERY similar (wink, wink) to what the real USA Today Ad Meter judges experience on the day of the Superbowl. The USA Today judges are regular people like you and I BTW. Current finalists are rated alongside previous year’s finalists commercials, and and also against spots like Budweiser, E-Trade, Geico, etc. etc., The finalists who fare the best (score the highest) are the ones Doritos chooses to compete during the Superbowl. End of story.

Doritos awards no creative finalist status unless the relative content demonstrates the requisite Ad Meter strength through test panel marketing. Case closed. Whatever way a creative does or doesn’t gain insight, advantage, upper-hand, insider-info, should matter little in the bigger picture. The most important take-away a freelance creative (and reader to this blog) should glean is to do the requisite homework to improve storytelling skills, increase production assets/values, and become steeped in the tradition of the brand to the extent you are capable of creating the type of content they just can’t pass over. Where the field of 6,000+ CTSB submissions is concerned, these five finalists did so.

The freelance genre (our world) is being flooded with new talent on a daily basis. Those creatives who used to be able to produce something half decent a year or two ago and gain some measure of recognition for their work, did so in part, because of the rather diminutive quantity of creatives on the scene at that time (it’s called ‘competition‘ Danny). During 2011 and now in 2012 things are changing even more rapidly and in bigger ways. We are being joined by waves and waves of new creatives who will force us to step up our game or render us obsolete. It is this continuing wave of oncoming talent that will help foster great changes in advertising. There is no free lunch. There is no ‘one-block-of-cheese-per-person’ stipulation. No entitlements here. It is a merit-based environment we must all prepare for. I try to improve daily. We all should. Only this way will we deserve the fruits of those labors that eventually reap reward. The alternative is to whine, complain, point fingers and wallow in mediocrity.

Doritos owes no one any apologies, and deserves much credit for what they do. The King is grateful for access like this on such a large scale, as we all should be.

His Highness


36 responses to “SuperBowl or Bust (Doritos Finalists Announced)

  1. Jared, unlike my disappointment with last years’ finalists these are all really great. I am a little selfishly annoyed with “Bird of Prey” though as it was an idea I wanted to expand on with my first submission in the contest five years ago “Birdman” I’m also tired of seeing Office Space Lumbergh character ripoffs. Otherwise, I wish everyone luck! They’re all already winners.

    If anyone is interested in my submission this year you can watch it here (plug!!) :

    • Greetings Sir Keith, Yeah, there were no ‘really bad’ choices this year. I thought ‘Brochacho’ and ‘Slingshot’ could have been easily supplanted by a number of other spots in the gallery (several from my top 13 list), but in the end you have to trust Doritos, considering they’ve nailed the #1 spot on the USA Today ad meter 2 of the last 3 years. Hard to wag a finger at success like that.

  2. One thing’s for sure – making a funny 30 second commercial is very hard, even, (or especially) if you have the money to play with. So hard, in fact that Lonely Island threw in the towel (for altruistic reasons they say) Check the “Contest Updates” on the crash site for details – 1 million bonus will be awarded again and probably more than one finalist will air during the super bowl. Thanks to z55 on vcn for the update. Maybe their ad didn’t test well…

    • You’re right Matt. You know, there were 6,000+ submissions in the contest but I would wager there weren’t more than around 200 that are worthy of national broadcast exposure, and even less worthy of Superbowl play. Lot harder to cross all of the requisite Ts and dot all of the mandatory Is in a production, sufficient to match what Madison Avenue has been doing for decades. Strange that The Lonely Island reneged on their promise. Kind of deflates the whole ‘Doritos Goes Hollywood’ angle doesn’t it?

  3. another way Doritos is winning (but kind of losing?):;contentBody#comments. And click through to see how huge the vid is, comments/likes-wise. And it has sat atop REddit all day.

  4. I don’t think you can buy the front page of reddit, digg, 10,000+ likes, CBS news coverage, comments, etc. And if you could, why would you with this?

    • If I wasn’t more of a producer than a blogger I’d probably know more about reddit and digg. I’ll have to give myself an education.
      Thanks Jonas

      • Hey Jared, I was actually one of the creators of Make Your Own along with my friends John Ramsey and Jack Dreesen. We actually did three spots this year, each submitting one under our names.

        I can assure you that we haven’t paid any money to have Make Your Own featured anywhere, all I did was post it to youtube this morning to coincide with the announcement of the finalists. Then some folks submitted it to reddit and digg and it just took off like crazy from there.

        Really can’t believe how many views it got today, a bit surreal. Obviously would have much preferred to have been a finalist, but having the Doritos video that’s the most talked about online the day of the finalists announcements is the next best thing I suppose.

        Anyway, thanks again for all of the reviews you did and the time spent on your blog.

        • David, “Make Your Own” was one of my favorites. Sadly, I don’t think Doritos is ready for this type of humor. Great idea and execution! Perhaps you will enjoy my spot “secret word”. It has a similar degree of intentional campiness:

        • Hello David! I’m the writer/director of “Man’s Best Friend,” and I just wanted to say that “Make Your Own” was one of my favorite spots this year (it’s brilliant and hilarious). I personally would have picked it for the Top 5, and was sorry to see that it wasn’t a finalist. It’s a fantastic commercial.

        • Hey David, Yeah, things like that happen. Glad you are getting some much deserved exposure. You guys are very talented. ‘Joined at the Chip’ was one of the first entries that caught my eye early on. I ultimately had to leave it off of my final 10-13 because it just didn’t have the ‘nut-sack’ demolition scene Doritos is always looking for. Though this year, in the end the judges seem to have awarded in a slightly different direction. You guys got skills. Keep The Kingdom updated on your progress as professionals.
          His Highness

  5. Well I’m really happy my 2 favorite spots made it this year. I just knew the first time I saw “Bird of Prey” that it would be a finalist, love the physical comedy and whole premise. “Mans best friend” was my second fav this year, also awesome and brilliant.

    I hadnt seen “Hot Wild Girls” or “Dog Park” till today, both are really good but I’m still rooting for Bird of Prey and Mans best friend. Good luck guys!

    • Hey…a Friar Danny sighting!
      Good of you to visit the kingdom, friar. Yeah, I have to admit, at first I wasn’t as enchanted as you were with ‘Bird of Prey’. But grew on me over the weeks until it eventually made my top five a few weeks ago. I credit you for me finally coming around to ‘Bird Of Prey’. “Man’s best friend” was one I believed in from the beginning. Let’s hope one of them makes it, then we’ll have to co-publish a secondary blog.
      The King

      • Very cool of you to say that Jared, I know it’s real easy for me to have a knee jerk reaction when viewing all these entries every year but I just believed that Bird of Prey had every essential element that makes up a great Super Bowl spot. I can’t wait to see if it makes the big game, which I still think it will;)

        • Yeah, I also thought it had strength. It just wasn’t top on my list. But considering all of the videos I watched it scored pretty high on the VCK even before old Danny boy slapped me up the side of the head.

  6. VCK,

    I am somewhat bitterly satisfied after reading your post. You assuaged my anger when you wrote-

    “Doritos will select the 25-100 submissions from the gallery…then put these spots in front of test market groups in an environment very, VERY similar (wink, wink) to what the real USA Today Ad Meter judges experience on the day of the Superbowl…”

    I very much hope that you write from experience or knowledge regarding Doritos’ selection process. If this were true it would be thrilling to know if Taze the Flavor made the list.

    As the director of Taze, I am very happy with our final product and find some-albeit very little-relief in the knowing Doritos made their choice and I need to no longer wait by the phone for the call. Best of luck to them as Man’s Best Friend was on my Top 5 of those I viewed.

    I appreciate your blog and the slap in the face I received as I read it. You speak truth when you say we do not need crutches. This is an open competition and how else to improve if not with the best. Granted there is a part of me that wishes if three of these finalists are comprised of the same team it would be noble of them to pull one out and allow Doritos to select the next contender. But who’s to say that it won’t be another made by them or another spec produced from previous finalists, could be yours? Then we would have the same argument and that doesn’t help anyone. I move on. We learned a lot from this- the big lesson being to go with my gut and I should have submitted at the most, two entries rather than my six. So, hopefully we will produce another spot that earns your #1 pick and is also selected by Doritos. BTW, can you apply for a job at Doritos as a CTSB judge?

    I read the VCN blog first and I did find my frustations justified. Which was funny because I didn’t really like any of his top 25 and VCN did not like Taze the Flavor. But as you wrote, it’s all personal opinions and preferences. Lose some, win more is my motto.

    Thank you for your realistic yet still somewhat positive blog that kept me from feeding my frustrations. I appreciate it. I am also grateful for your positive review and constructive feedback regarding Taze the Flavor. I had not seen any of the previous “tazer” commercials and the six submissions was an video contest novice mistake in believing that our original ideas would be considered too violent. Finally, thanks for the ranking and keep an eye out for more 4KMedia in the video contest world as we are gonna use this momentum to enter/win more contests and hopefully find national work. BTW, ours was a $100 budget which basically paid for the Doritos and lunch for cast and crew. Crane and lights were a loan from the community college, ENMU-Roswell, crew volunteered and it was shot on Keith’s, co-collaborator, RED.

    Best of luck to the five and long live VCK. Also, is the Duke or Prince title still up although we didn’t become a finalist? :^)

    • It wouldn’t be the first time the VCN mystified a fellow creative.
      But do not fear, I hereby dub thee ‘Sir Rodney’ of the Video Contest Kingdom and bestow upon thee all the rights, privileges and responsibilities commensurate with the title of ‘DUKE’. Go to the banquet hall forthrightly and commiserate with the other VCK citizens who came up a bit short this year with the CTSB, your’s truly included. You now own a platinum plated key to the royal draw bridge, but remember….with great power comes great responsibility. See you in the next great video contest.
      His Highness

      • Hail Thee VCK,

        I graciously kneel and bow mine head and with open heart accept thy offer. I thanketh thee.

        This key shall not be misused. Your trust to the kingdom not abused. Thy website shall be viewed and never from a contest will I make ruse.

        Now where’s this buffet thingy?! Cuz I’m hungry yo and I gots questions for the VCKers who didn’t use a dog or baby in this contest and what we need to do to win.

  7. Hello King! I just wanted to thank you for supporting my commercial, “Man’s Best Friend,” from the beginning. So far the reactions to it have been very positive and I hope I’m lucky enough to have it shown during the Super Bowl! If you or any of the other bloggers have any questions, I’d be happy to answer them.

    • No sweat on the kudos, Jonathan. You deserve it. I hope you are embarking on a radical vote-getting scheme. I really think Doritos rewards at least one of the spots based on the amount of votes they work for (tally). The other spot(s) that play during the SB might just be Doritos choice, but there is a benefit to executing a social internet campaign for at least one of the slots. Come back to the VCK and keep us posted on the happenings. If my blog is Doritos centric, I’ll try to include your progress in the body of the post.

  8. VCK, I am writing this in response to your criticism of “Beardy” Video Contest New’s Blog…I much start out by stating that VCN (Beardy) and I have had our differences in the past two weeks on picks and other related video contest “stuff.” So, this is not an endorsement of him or his site, (but, I do respect his honesty) but merely a defense of his most recent blog pertaining to the top 5 finalists. HE IS RIGHT…There is something rotten in the state of Denmark! Now, for you to bash him on it is both unfair and a tad bit suspect…it seems like you, VCK, are afraid of the Frito Lay suits and can’t admit that there is something not right. All of a sudden, Lonely Island backs out? Come on…you are in the business and should no that nothing is a mistake or let for chance. I give credit to the top 5 finalists but I have to get this out there that they are just not the best…one step further, they are not even funny…are you telling me out of 6100 entries, this is what the judges come up with…pls!!! They all look the same…cookie cutter and predictable, but shot nice. VCK, everyone is entitled to their own opinion and to that note, I respect yours. However, at least see that there is something very, very wrong. Just because the people at Frito Lay have hit home runs for the past few years does not guarantee a championship this year. Everyone tanks sometime, it is part of life…KA

    • Hey Ka, you need to step back for a second and take a big breath.
      1. 2007 Doritos scores 5th place in the USATAM.
      2. 2008 Doritos scores 4th place in the USATAM. (This, despite not running the contest and airing a spot from the year before from my friends Billy Federighi and Brent Snyder).
      3. 2009 Doritos scores 1st and 5th place in the USATAM.
      4. 2010 Doritos scores 2nd place in the USATAM.
      5. 2011 Doritos scores 1st, 4th and 5th in the USATAM.

      In five years Doritos has been in the top five of the USA Today Ad Meter Poll, 8 times (EIGHT TIMES!!!). This is unheard of in the world of advertising. USA Today uses a sample of people (about 300 individuals) that represent the average viewing public during the Superbowl. Doritos does well with this smattering of sweaty palm joystick/dial holding joe-shmoes. They may not be as artsy-minded as you and I. They may not understand the difference between a scrim and a baffle where PVs are concerned, but they represent the masses. Sorry if this makes you lose any faith with your fellow human being, but the type of content doritos chooses annually has scored in a big way every single year. Frankly that you, I or anyone else thinks we know better is a little haughty.

      Hey, in the past, I’ve allowed myself the same indiscretions you have in entertaining the possibility of conspiracy with the CTSB. Time, practicality and reason over the years has, however, taught me differently. Of course I want the suits at FritoLays to like me and keep me on their radar. It doesn’t mean I am afraid of them. It just means that commercial production is my career, and I am not a stupid businessman. Burning bridges (something Beardy is quite adept at), is not smart business practice and would probably eventually reduce my creative options to blogging alone. We need to be ‘liked’ by the people who pay our bills or they will otherwise search their options.

      Now Ka, I had three horses in this race. You can check out the links in a blog post a couple articles back. I personally think that one or two of my spots should have been in the finalist bracket. Like you however, my opinion is subjective, born of my own personal life experiences. Does this mean I was treated unfairly by FritoLays/Doritos? Of course not. It only means that Doritos did their homework and are reacting to the information they received from it. I am sure there are spots that Doritos loved, (probably many in my top 13), that they had to walk away from because their investment in market testing told them they needed to. The same market testing that has made them victorious in unprecedented fashion over the years. So come on, exhale and let Doritos go. When in doubt, follow the money trail. The money trail here suggests Doritos will do nothing that keeps them from scoring as high as possible in the USATAM.

      There could be any number of reasons why ‘The Lonely Island’ reneged on their promise to produce for the contest. heck, they might have produced but their spot failed in the market testing. Not even ‘The Lonely Island’ could convince Doritos to make decisions that would guarantee failure. Who knows how Doritos will fare this year. Though I don’t agree with the lot of five they picked as finalists I would not be surprised if they scored one or two spots in the top five again. My advice to you would be to spend less time at the cage rattling VCN and more time understanding how the advertising model works at Doritos and the CTSB. The winners of this year’s contest either got very lucky or did their homework and scored appropriately.

      BTW, Doritos never suggested that the CTSB was for amateurs only, and that it should only ever happen once per person, so that other less talented people have a ‘chance’. This whole entitlement idea that Danny Lamoureux (Beardy) proliferates is absurd and I surmise can only come from unfairness in his life, manifesting itself in his VCN tirades with a goal of equalizing his perceived inequities. After all, he is a self-proclaimed nerd and even helped produce a feature length film titled ‘Nerdcore for Life’. I’m not lying, I’ve seen the trailer, kind of disturbing. Don’t nerds tend to feel/claim they are mistreated/overlooked? I’m guessing here regarding his motives but what is plain is the hand biting of all the people who might otherwise serve the freelance creative his next meal. Beardy is running out of hands to bite. so before you align yourself with anyone, be careful, you could end up being lumped in with them and everything on the internet tends to stick around for awhile.

      No conspiracy here Ka. Just capitalism, competition, creativity, talent, risk-taking, investment and all of the things that have made our country an exceptional nation.

      His Highness

  9. It amazes me that some people (VCN) refuse to believe in likely outcomes and resort to crying foul and coming up with far-fetched scenarios as a coping mechanism. Why is it so hard to believe that:

    1. A successful and talented group or individual would make the finals on more than one occasion. The same people are Oscar contenders year after year… it’s because they have talent, not because someone behind the curtain whispered “the secret” in their ear. It shouldn’t be a surprise that they live in the LA area as well, because that is where most films (and commercials) are made. Actually, it would be more surprising if there were five new finalists year after year who lived in different parts of the country. I’ve seen the same creators consistently win on other contests, which include Jared and Beardy. As far as “the secret” goes, isn’t it Doritos that invites the finalist to publicly discuss how they came up with their ideas so that all the rest of us can learn from??? Doritos even produced a video on the crash site where they told you what they wanted + the Herbert Bros graciously made videos showing you how to do it.

    2. That good writing > production value. It doesn’t cost a lot of money to be funny and win (see Snow Globe, see Shock Collar, see Kids These Days, see House Rules, see First Date). It doesn’t take a lot of money to have good production value, just inventiveness (see Robert Rodriguez film school). But money sure does come in handy! So if your only need is production funds and you have a winning script, convince people with money to back you (see most every movie ever made).

    Note: VCN/Beardy claims he has won over $70k on contests, then says a $25k winner from last year has a huge unfair advantage in the contest due because he had money???

    3. That Doritos would select the ads that rank highest in marketing test instead of selecting past finalists. Doritos goal is to make #1, #2, and #3 on the SuperBowl ad meter. We all know that everyone has a different opinion on which entries were the funniest, so ad meter marketing tests are the best way to determine the finalists (what ad exec would want to risk his/her job on picking a potential dud without analytical proof of success). If the test audience favored past finalist, then it’s only because they make funny, like-able and memorable spots. It’s not easy!!

    4. That the finalist submissions aren’t found funny by other entrants. Comedy works due to an acceptance to be entertained by the audience and a delivery of the unexpected and surprise, it will always fail under scrutiny and judgement.

    • Hey Matt,
      To sum up Danny Lamoureux’s POV (Beardy from Video Contest News), you need only execute a brief google search. He is a self-described nerd. I’m not labeling him here, he is agreeable to the term. In fact, as I mentioned to ka below, he is so into the culture, that he co-produced a feature film titled ‘Nerdcore For Life’. he’s dead serious about the stuff. In my experience, self-appointed spokespersons for ‘nerdism’ like Danny, usually bring with them baggage that comes with that territory. They often feel dis-enfranchised, trodden underfoot, excluded from the ‘in crowd’ (or at least that’s their perception). The kind of dude who practices little or none, and can’t figure out why he is always chosen last for the pick-up basketball game. Nerd leaders can be quick to express paranoia in their intellectual expression. Some of it justified, some of it not.

      Danny is quick to explain away things he doesn’t understand as ‘conspiracy’. It’s easier that way. You don’t have to work to change anything about yourself if you are simply being conspired upon.

      You need only go back to the archives of his blog about a year or so to see examples where he has threatened to sue several different contest/brands including Doritos (FritoLays ) themselves, relative to his conspiracy theories. And it usually happens right after he loses a contest. I wouldn’t put too much clout into his ranting and raving. Not worth your time. I’m always dealing with fellow peers who come to the kingdom having just left the VCN. After a bit of time I usually help them uncross their eyes, but the time they wasted there can never be recouped. Life is short.

      BTW, In defending myself from a tirade of his a year or so, old Beardy-obe-won-kinohbe banned me from commenting on the VCN site, even when he occasionally blogs about the VCK. Don’t be surprised if it happens to you. He doesn’t like a good argument and will censor anyone who gets the intellectual upper hand. Frankly though Matt, it’s probably the best thing that could ever happen to you.

      His Highness

  10. VCK, Understood…however, no one is aligning themselves with anyone…I am only saying that “in my belief” DORITOS got it wrong this year. Now, as I said that’s just my opinion. Please don’t take this the wrong wY but the way you are spinning things is like DORITOS never gets it wrong the past few years and their marketing strategy is golden and money in the bank. If that’s the case, why even advertise? Just take that money and invest in stocks if they and you it seems are so sure…nothing is certain, that’s one thing you as a filmmaker should realize…that’s all I am saying as I too am a fellow producer, filmmaker, actor who does realize that the commercials chosen were well shot…the end.

    • ka said: […you are spinning things is like DORITOS never gets it wrong the past few years and their marketing strategy is golden and money in the bank. If that’s the case, why even advertise? ]

      Ka, the reason Doritos is so successful is becasue they ‘do’ advertise….in a myriad of ways…….through the CRASH. Stopping advertisements is not an option, it would be utterly stupid. The CTSB is genius because of the numbers. Do you know how many ad agencies or production companies would have to be hired to give Doritos the same options that the CTSB gives them? And to then be able to choose only the ‘best’ for broadcast and discard the rest without obligation to compensate the creative? And what is so awesome about the whole exercise, is that we knowingly give it all to Doritos…for free. We as freelancers agree to all of this. It’s brilliant.

      BTW, the king decides when it is the end. That’s how it is when you own the kingdom.
      His Highness

  11. How bout these doritos(food) for thought;
    6000+ comercials produced with probably 2000 at least being duplicates.
    we purchased 7 bags of doritos for our spot but many seemed to use closer to twenty, so lets guess 8 bags per spot
    now depending on size i believe a bag costs between 1 and 4 dollars so lets say 2 per bag for this equation
    4000 bags
    x 8 bags per commercial
    32000 bags total
    x 2 dollars per bag
    64000 dollar$ spent on doritos durring CTSB
    No loss for doritos there.

    • Excellent observation 4K,
      I remember the first year of the crash I produced a ‘Dr. Evil’ spoof and for the scene in which it ‘rains’ Doritos I used 20 bags.

  12. Doritos isn’t doing this contest to sell bags to contest contestants lol $64k in doritos sales does not equal $64k in funds going to doritos. The store gets most of that money. Let’s say they pocketed $64k in increase in sales form the contest, how much do they spend making and hosting that website with a ridiculous amount of traffic, streaming videos, and so forth? How much does it cost to sift through over 6,000 videos and narrow it down to 5? This is a rather inexpensive way to get superbowl quality ads, a lot of publicity, and they only have a large payout to the content creator if it happens to be one of the most successful ads during one of the most competitive advertising events on TV in the States. The 64k in sales for ad creation is a drop in the bucket and not on their radar.

    Jared, how does Doritos handle residuals for content creators. If actors are SAG, they pay SAG minimum. I’m guessing with the longevity of some of these ads, that isn’t too bad for a lot of people. Does the director get anything? What if they are in the DGA? Do you know how that works with this contest?

    • Hey Viking,
      Okay…you went forensic on a citizen of the kingdom so I will return the favor. I think what 4K was referring to was the ‘residual’ branding that accompanies the thousands of bags of Doritos that the storeowners, checkers and fellow customers see as they pass through the checkout scanner. Try to quantify the value of the resultant conversations which justifiably happen to be more memorable than the price of chuck steak.

      The family members, and friends of family who witness the sudden massive amounts of ‘Doritos’ in and around the household. All of the cast and crew and family that eat the product on the shoot day and the leftovers that lingered in the household in the days/weeks following the shoot. The red bag on the counter is a virtual micro-commercial for the brand that lasts far beyond the shoot date. Hope that makes sense.

      Now, let’s get to the union question you asked. At the time of broadcast for my ‘Chip Lover’s Dream’ commercial….

      I achieved SAG(e) status for some work I had done on the show E.R. (Warner Bros.) in 2006. I hadn’t as yet joined the union. But I did end up taking some ‘holding fee’ money from the Doritos $10,000.00 purchase of my commercial to pay for my SAG induction in 2007. All told, I believe I received two holding fees for the Doritos commercial, approx. $1,300.00 each. I didn’t receive ‘residual’ pay, per-sey, only the holding fees. It was cool though because Doritos sent out ‘broadcast schedules’ so we knew exactly when/where the commercials would play weeks in advance. It was a great gag I would play on friends and family, since I had only been acting for a year or so and many of my acquaintances didn’t even know I was ‘in’ the industry. Boom!!! all of a sudden there was our chubby brother, uncle, son, teacher, coach etc., on TV. Lot’s of fun.

      I do not know if there was ever remuneration for directors since I am not yet a member of the DGA, and I certainly never received any pay from Goodby Silverstein and Partners thereto.
      That’s OK though because I’m proud to claim the distinction as the only creative, ever……. to execute the jobs of: actor, writer, cameraman, stunt-coordinator, location scout, director, editor, foley, sound-man, logistics, gaffer, crew, craft services, lighting, colorizer, SFX coordinator, etc.,……..for a national commercial. If you know of a one-man production company who accomplished it prior to March 2007, let me know and I’ll quit gloating. How’s that for being on the cutting edge of micro-production. Shameless plug I know, but I ask your indulgence. I have a little chip on my shoulder if you haven’t noticed. Thanks Viking.

      His Higness, The King of……The Video Contest Kingdom

  13. If an actor appears in a SAG commercial, s/he should be paid a minimum daily rate determined by the specific conditions of the shoot and the specific work performed and the day(s) worked during production. The minimum daily rate is determined by SAG.

    If the (SAG) commercial airs, the SAG commercial actor should receive two checks every 13 week cycle as long as the contract is renewed. The actor is paid at the onset of the cycle a “Holding Fee” which is an agreement that the actor will not appear in a competitor’s commercial. In addition, the actor is paid separately for residuals (or “Use Fees”) accrued during the previous 13 week cycle determined by the amount of exposure the commercial receives and by what medium (broadcast, cable, internet, etc.)

    That’s the way is should work according to SAG, but these contests seem to play by their own rules and the commercials air in perpetuity.

    • Hey Matt,
      RE: Minimum daily SAG rate
      I imagine Goody, Silverstein and Partners have received a waiver from SAG regarding paying actors (union and non-union) while the commercials still exist as spec.. Otherwise, they would have to pay millions and millions of dollars in actors pay for all submissions. Even, after finalists have been selected there probably is no requirement to pay an actor for work on a spot that was presented as spec. months prior to the purchase. SAG is known to give all kind of waivers on all kind of projects in order for the greater good (commencement of production) to occur. Despite the cumbersome nature of unions, SAG still asserts that they are not trying to be an impediment, just an arbitrator for fair industry practices.
      RE: Holding Fees
      I did receive my checks relative to holding fees for my spot. Considering there was a total of 11 actors involved in the finalists that first year it constituted another $20,000.00+ that Goodby had to pay out.
      His Highness

  14. The entries are not covered by SAG, just the finalists. This concession allows SAG actors to partake in the contest regardless of outcome. I know this because I’ve personally asked SAG. SAG actors are forbidden to act in most user generated ads because they are typically non-union and that would violate SAG rule #1.
    As far as paying for the day of work, that’s spec work/contest murky water where the sponsor makes up the rules. I don’t know what SAG’s position is on that.

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