Winning a free trip to the Super Bowl is a great sporting experience, and getting $50,000 in the bargain is fantastic. But the mind-blowing part of Sunday was Graham Talbot seeing his “When Pig’s Fly” ad run on the world’s biggest stage for advertising.
“The whole experience was … you can’t put it into words” said the Maple Ridge cinematographer, who runs the fledgeling film company Talbot Twins Cinematography with his brother Nelson.
But he did a good job of putting it into words.
“When the spot aired, an atomic bomb of emotion blew up inside my head,” is how he put it.
Talbot entered the Doritos Crash the Super Bowl contest, and his entry was one of the 10 finalists chosen from 5,000 from across the globe. As such, he won a trip to see the Seattle Seahawks take on the New England Patriots in Sunday’s epic Super Bowl.
He and the other nine finalists were set up with box seats on the Pats’ side of the field, Graham Talbot was rubbing elbows with the likes of British comedian Eric Idle, of Monty Python fame. He got a photo taken with novelist George R.R. Martin, who wrote Game of Thrones.
The first Doritos contest ad aired, and it wasn’t his. Missing out on the $1 million grand prize was a disappointment, but he lost out to a hilarious ad by American Scott Zebielski, featuring a guy on a plane trying to keep the seat next to him empty, by loudly blowing his nose, giving himself a pedicure and flossing his teeth as other passengers board. It was Talbot’s favourite, too, and won the audience online voting.
“There’s no shame in losing to his commercial,” Talbot said.
He and the other nine finalists had a long sweat, waiting until the fourth quarter to finally learn who was the runner-up, as chosen by the chip company itself. He said they were a fun bunch to hang out with, and congratulatory when he won the next biggest prize.
“When Pigs Fly” is both the title, and what the boy in Talbot’s commercial was told when he asked a salty farmer for some chips. He sets about building a rocket to launch a porker. It was the choice of Doritos. Talbot said they loved it.
It was a heartbreaking game for those who watched Seahawks quarterback Russell Wilson throw an interception, when his team was just a yard away from a game-winning touchdown.
But Talbot was flying high.
“I was supporting the Seahawks, but as the game was ending, I was fielding phone calls from friends and family.”
It’s a great piece for the Talbots’ resumes, and has to get the 25-year-old cinematographers some credibility as a true up-and-comers in a tough industry to break into.
“Getting a commercial out to 100 million people should do something,” he said.
His brother Nelson was there, too, but as the prize was for one person, he couldn’t be in the chip company’s box. He was in the stands, though, with friends at the big game.
They can enter again, and Graham Talbot said he might team up with the person who helped him develop the visual effects for “When Pigs Fly” for next year’s contest.
“We’ll have to up our game again,” he said. “Or maybe I’ll be so busy with new projects, that I won’t have time.”
“It was an amazing experience, through and through.”