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83-Steelers-43
07-27-2006, 06:07 AM
Collier: McDonald's commercial the grand finale to Steelers offseason
Thursday, July 27, 2006

Pittsburgh Post-Gazette

When you awake tomorrow, the most overheated Steelers offseason in recent memory will be history, its jarring physical and metaphorical dimensions -- from the East Room of the White House to the courtrooms of Ohio and Florida, from the mad-glamorous ESPY Awards at Hollywood's Kodak Theatre to the intensely unglamorous emergency entrance to Mercy Hospital -- will appear to narrow and focus and reset.

But as of yesterday, there was still room for one more big production, and naturally at least one more opportunity for the forces of entropy, the natural inevitable destabilization of any system.

Backup quarterback Charlie Batch and offensive tackle Max Starks glared at each other across a small conference table in a rear alcove of the Steelers' practice facility.

"It all comes down to this," Batch said.

"Charlie," Starks said, pleading with the QB not to proceed with his apparent intentions.

But Batch did, and when it was all over, there was a triangle shaped imprint in Starks' forehead from the kick, and while this isn't the kind of episode the Steelers need on the eve of training camp, this time they got lucky.

It was just a McDonald's commercial, which is to say just a production that requires the approximate number of people it takes to land the space shuttle, including Michael Killen, the noted local director who brought you the voice of the Taco Bell Chihuahua.

"This is the first chance I've had to work with the Steelers," Killen says. "It's been great. I'm a longtime fan."

The idea for this spot is pretty slick.

Batch and Starks are playing paper football across the table top, the game you used to play with your brother with a piece of paper you'd folded into a triangle that he'd always flick too hard and it would wind up on top of the refrigerator, until that time the cat jumped up there after it thinking she'd seen a bird and, one thing leading to another, the cops came, but that's another column.

The climax comes when Batch is ready for the winning "kick," a flick of the paper football between Starks' goal-posted fingers, and calls in Steelers kicker Jeff Reed, who stands on the table and, yeah.

"Charlie, I didn't say anything about using a kicker," Starks protests.

"Ya didn't say I couldn't," Batch replies.

Batch has the only difficult line: "When I'm playing for both a Big Mac and a premium crispy chicken classic extra value meal, I play to win."

Charlie does this just about perfectly the first time, which means he only has to do it about 100 more times in the next several hours so that the crew, in producing the final product, can select the best angles, inflections, expressions, etc.

At one point Killen asked Batch for a little more attitude up-front, and it was very hard not to lean out into hall and yell, "Joey!?"

No, I don't seriously think this ad could use Porter, although one screaming, trash-talking shot at sandwich-hawking might have been fairly entertaining.

Too bad Killen wasn't looking specifically for light-hearted banter.

The star, of course, isn't a Steeler; it's the sandwiches. The sandwiches at the edge of the table, perched on what looks like it could be a playbook if it weren't maybe one fifth the actual size, aren't the real sandwiches. They're stand-ins, and I suppose if need be, stunt sandwiches.

"You need a 10-minute warning for the sandwich?" someone barked.

"Ten minutes is good for a medium shot," came the answer, "probably 15 or 20 if it's a shot of the table top."

Only then will they bring out the actual TV-ready Big Mac and the premium crispy chicken classic extra crispy premium meal chicken value classic meal. And until then, I guess, the sandwiches will simply remain in their trailer.

Fortunately, there's plenty of downtime. It takes a large staff like this just to take the objectionable logos out of a single frame. The shoot called for Batch and Starks in their game jerseys, for example, but black tape had to be cut and attached to cover the NFL and Reebok logos, which are not getting any free product placement next to the classic chicken premium value crispy thing. Even in the off-focus background over Batch's left shoulder, someone had to strip the labels off some water bottles.

Batch and Starks did what anyone would do in this situation, they played paper football and argued about it, but at least there was no cat.

"You missed the kick," Starks said at one point. "Way to go, Vanderjagt."

HometownGal
07-27-2006, 07:39 AM
What a great read! Thanks 83. :smile:

I remember playing paper football with my brother when I was a kid. Reading that brought back a lot of fun memories!

I cracked up at this:

You missed the kick," Starks said at one point. "Way to go, Vanderjagt."


LMFAO!! :sofunny:

cbalke
07-27-2006, 08:09 AM
"You missed the kick," Starks said at one point. "Way to go, Vanderjagt."

hahahahahahahahahaahahahahahahahahah!!1!!!!

:sofunny: :sofunny: :toofunny: :toofunny: :toofunny: :funny: :funny: :funny: :kick: :kick: :kick: :point: :point: :point: :point: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl: :rofl:

CheapBasturd
07-27-2006, 08:19 AM
"Way to go, Vanderjagt." :sofunny:

That would be a classic if that was in the commercial. But, thats a lawsuit waiting to happen .. lol :busted:

HometownGal
07-27-2006, 08:29 AM
But, thats a lawsuit waiting to happen .. lol :busted:

Vanderdrunk would probably be too shart-faced to notice or even care. :blurp:

It's all in fun and there have been a lot of commercials with professional athletes taking humorous shots at other athletes.

Polamalu43
07-27-2006, 05:07 PM
"Way to go, Vanderjagt." :sofunny:

That would be a classic if that was in the commercial. But, thats a lawsuit waiting to happen .. lol :busted:
:dang:

83-Steelers-43
07-27-2006, 05:08 PM
That's a great quote..lol. Now they need to get their heads in the right place and start focusing on camp and put all the Super Bowl celebrations and accolades behind them.

SteelerFanInCA
07-27-2006, 05:14 PM
It's time to refocus and get ready for the upcoming season. Let's put the wheels in motion as we head for #6 in 06. :excited:

melroseplace
07-27-2006, 05:36 PM
haha can't wait to see the commercial...and also to see the guys in action here in a couple days!