25th - 26th SEPTEMBER 2019  |  OLYMPIA

Planters returns to the Super Bowl, this time with a ‘Veep’ star

Ad Age 14 Jan 2020 11:45

Planters is returning to the Super Bowl with a spot that features “Veep” star Matt Walsh alongside the brand’s Mr. Peanut spokescharacter.

Walsh, who played Mike McLintock on the HBO series, called starring in his first Super Bowl commercial “a tiny milestone, if you will.”

The 30-second spot is set to air during the third quarter and once again comes from VaynerMedia, which also worked with the Kraft Heinz nut brand on its 2019 Super Bowl spot. It was directed by Dave Meyers.

Planters has not yet released the spot, which it says shows a “nutty adventure” in which Mr. Peanut shows how far he’ll go to have his friends’ backs. Mr. Peanut, Planters says, “will leave fans shell-shocked.” Walsh didn’t say much about the premise but said the Planters Nutmobile appears and that there’s a plot twist.

Planters is the second Kraft Heinz brand to announce a return to the game. Heinz is also back in the Super Bowl, marking the ketchup brand’s first time in the game since 2016.

In 2019, Planters’ 30-second spot “Crunch Time” featured Mr. Peanut doing some reckless driving. It starred Alex Rodriguez along with a cameo by Charlie Sheen.

Planters ran a 30-second spot, “Perfume,” from DraftFCB in 2008. 

Along with Planters and Heinz, other food brands advertising during the Super Bowl include Frito-Lay’s Cheetos and Doritos, Sabra, Kellogg Co.’s Pop-Tarts and Pringles, Snickers, and Avocados From Mexico.

“It’s such an event,” Walsh said of the game, which he usually watches at a party held in a Los Angeles theater with fellow actors and comedians. 

While “Veep” was a hit during its seven-season run on HBO, which ended in 2019, its audience was tiny compared to the 110 million or so who tune into the Super Bowl each year.

Walsh, who recently went on a USO tour and recorded an upcoming podcast with Kevin Bacon, said he is a Planters fan and recalls his dad opening cans of mixed nuts for poker games years ago. The Planters spot is his first commercial in years. Walsh said he started his acting career in Chicago and received his SAG card for doing a True Value hardware spot. He later appeared in ads for the likes of Honda, Diet Dr Pepper and the Make-a-Wish Foundation.

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