Let’s first call out the elephant in the room: what the folks over there at Frito-Lay (the parent company of those delicious but finger-befouling Doritos tortilla chips) have done is a brilliant bit of corporate sorcery. By encouraging contestants to conceive, shoot, and edit their own television commercials, Frito-Lay is not only getting publicity when people discuss and participate in the contest itself, but they are also, of course, getting multiple commercials produced for free! And they’ve been doing it for seven years now.
That said, contests such as these do indeed offer aspiring filmmakers a wonderful opportunity for commercial success (see what we did there) and a shot to not only have their work seen by millions of people, but also to win some serious cash.
For the 2014 contest, several “Finalists” will receive prizes of $25,000 and will have their spots available for viewing online. The first and second Grand Prize winners are the spot which receives the most votes submitted by fans, and a spot selected by the people at Doritos, respectively. The second-place finisher gets a handsome sum of fifty grand along with a trip to the big game and time on the set of a major motion picture. The Grand Prize winner(s) will get one million dollars, plus a party at Super Bowl XLVIII (which may seem like chump change compared to a million bucks, but hey, throw it in there).
Both of the Grand Prize winners will also have their commercials aired during the Super Bowl, an amazing springboard for any aspiring, passionate filmmakers. Keep in mind that a surprising number of the most prominent directors working today, such as David Fincher and Spike Jonze, got their starts directing advertisements and music videos.
You might not recall all of last year’s finalists for years to come (they were “Fetch,” “Express Checkout,” and “Road Chip”) but we bet any Super Bowl commercial enthusiasts will long remember the two winners, which were “Fashionista Daddy,” an ad involving men in women’s clothes eating tortilla chips, and “Goat 4 Sale,” which featured lots of Doritos and a screaming goat (so of course we loved it).
The window for submissions runs from October 8th, 2013, through November 24th, and the five finalists will be announced about one month before Super Bowl XLVIII.