'Ferris Bueller' Super Bowl ad: Why Matthew Broderick almost didn't star in it
Sunday’s Super Bowl halftime ad break is still almost a week away, but you can get a sneak peek at Honda’s new Ferris Bueller-inspired spot by clicking below. In fact, you’ll get a whole lot more than a peek: This is the full two-and-a-half minute version of Matthew Broderick reprising his role in an homage to the iconic 1986 John Hughes comedy. The clip that will be broadcast during halftime — where ad time costs $3.5 million for 30 seconds — will be only one minute long.
“We wanted to get it out there and start the hype,” says Jason Sperling, executive vice president at RPA, the ad firm that thought up the spot (and hired Hangover director Todd Phillips to direct it). “You actually get a lot more eyeballs this way. You get a more attentive audience.” Super Bowl commercial aficionados will recall that last year’s Star Wars-themed Volkswagen commercial — in which a little boy in a Darth Vader costume uses Jedi mind tricks to start his dad’s Passat — became a web sensation, with 8 million people watching the ad online before it actually aired during the game. “We have this Internet culture now, and people are starting to realize the value of it,” says Sperling.
Getting the movie and music rights needed to make the ad was relatively easy, but convincing Broderick to sign on took some doing. “At first, he passed,” recalls Sperling. “But then a week later he called and asked if it was still on the table. I think he just wanted to be convinced that we would do the movie justice.” You can judge for yourself whether they succeeded or not — and while you’re at it, see if you can spot some of the Ferris Bueller Easter eggs strewn throughout the homage. For instance, that white-fringe jacket at the Chinese parade look familiar to anyone?