To many, a career in advertising is a dream job. As evidence, take note of how many characters in TV and movies work in advertising. The perception is that it’s three martini lunches, big expense accounts, and filming commercials in exotic locales.
In reality, it’s more like lunch at your desk, small budgets, and shooting video in studios so hot they only feel like exotic locales. Don’t get me wrong; it’s pretty darn cool—but not always a dream.
But every once in a while, this goofy world of advertising lets you fulfill a life long dream.
To some, that’s meeting a celebrity. One of our guys met one of the Sports Illustrated Swimsuit cover models. That’s cool. A number of Martino Flynn veterans have met athletes like Ken Griffey Jr. and Mike Golic. That’s cool.
But it’s all small potatoes compared to my dream, which came true thanks to a recent video project.
Ok, perhaps that leaves you under-whelmed. But for much of my adult life, I’ve had this fascination with The King. Not the young, gold lamé jacket Elvis. Or the leather-clad ’68 Special Elvis. No, my fascination has always been with the Las Vegas, jumpsuit-wearing Elvis. You know…the one who showed up unannounced in Richard Nixon’s office…carrying a gun.
That’s the image of The King for me. So when I was tasked with coming up with someone who understands the importance of “image” for a new campaign, there was no better choice than Elvis.
Except for an Asian Elvis, that is.
We found him via Facebook of all things. A former winner of the Gong Show and a veteran of movies and TV like Honeymoon in Vegas and Married With Children, he showed up in King-like splendor and immediately started giving away scarves—minus the perspiration.
I was in the presence of royalty.
In between shooting, we sat and exchanged obscure Elvis trivia. What’s the last song The King ever sang? Who was singing on TV when The King shot out the TV screen? What was the name of The King’s monkey and how did he meet his untimely demise? What book was he was reading when he met his maker (Elvis, that is, not the monkey).
The point to this story? The deep hidden meaning that will say something about the state of our industry or yours? Sorry. There is none. If I could write anything that had meaning, I never would have chosen advertising.
But then I never would have known that Elvis played racquetball at 2 a.m., stopped the game because he was winded, and sat down at the piano to sing what would be his last tune—Blue Eyes Cryin’ in the Rain.
Long live The King!
– Duane Bombard