Cue Cheryl Lynn’s “Got To Be Real” because Pepsi Zero Sugar’s Super Bowl commercials are all about being real – or, in the case of the spot starring Ben Stiller, it’s about how “the real is real.” At the start of the spot, Ben, 57, says that his job as an actor “is to make you believe what you’re seeing is real.” Cue several high-budget, high-emotional scenes (including a Rachel Dratch cameo) about how actors make pain, cold, and friendship seem real. After these flashes to The Martian, The Revenant, we finally see Ben as Derek Zoolander. “The real is real,” he says in his trademark whisper.
“But it’s not real,” says Ben, back on set. “It’s just acting.” He then takes a sip of Pepsi Zero Sugar and is shocked by what he tastes. “Wow, it’s like, really good,” he says. “Or was I just acting?” he slyly says to the camera. “Only way to know is to try it for yourself.” Of course, Ben couldn’t leave without giving us a little more Zoolander goodness, as the spot closes with Derek going, “This is really, really, ridiculously good-tasting,” he says, before flashing his “Blue Steel” look.
Stiller’s last big-screen outing as Derek came in 2016 with Zoolander No. 2, the sequel to the 2001 original. The film saw Own Wilson and Will Ferrell reprise their roles as Hansel and Mugatu, respectively. Penélope Cruz, Kristen Wiig, Fred Arminsen, and more also starred in the film (which featured cameos from everyone — from Justin Bieber to Tommy Hilfiger to Anna Wintour.)
Ben’s is one of two Big Game spots Pepsi Zero Sugar will run during Super Bowl LVII on Feb. 12. The second features Steve Martin, who had some not-so-playful banter with Ben in early teasers. “It’s been great fun to collaborate with Pepsi and the entire crew and creative team on this spot,” said Ben Stiller in a press release accompanying the release of this full commercial. “I think the idea of whether or not an actor actually believes what they are saying when they do a commercial is a fun idea to play with. Though there is really no question, Derek Zoolander believes what he is saying, even though he doesn’t know what it means.”
“I love that I’m working with my mortal enemy, Ben Stiller,” said Steve Martin in that statement. “Doing a Pepsi Zero Sugar Super Bowl commercial is an honor next only to being a Quarterback – no tackling.”
“Consumers today are skeptical towards advertising, often unsure of what is real and what is just acting, which is magnified on advertising’s biggest night, the Super Bowl, when brands bring in actors and celebrities to help pitch their products,” said Todd Kaplan, Chief Marketing Officer – Pepsi. “Since we just launched our upgraded Pepsi Zero Sugar product with a new and improved taste, we wanted to flip this norm on its head, stoking a conversation about what is real and what is acting with two iconic actors in their own right.”
“In this epic new ‘Great Acting or Great Taste?’ campaign, Ben and Steve humorously blur the lines between what is real and what is acting while unveiling the most simple truth of all – the only way to really know is to try it yourself,” added Kaplan. “We at Pepsi are putting our money where our mouth is, giving away up to 10 Million free bottles of Pepsi Zero Sugar, empowering fans everywhere to truly taste it and decide for themselves.”
For those interested in trying the new Pepsi Zero Sugar, the brand is offering up to 10 million free cans and bottles to decide for themselves if it is great acting or great taste – fans can text “FREE ZERO” to 81234 to comp a free Pepsi Zero Sugar.