A 30-second Super Bowl commercial made by a single dad that cost less than $300 and starred his son and his dog has earned the aspiring filmmaker $1 million.
Ryan Thomas Anderson, of Scottsdale, Ariz., was announced today as the winner of the Doritos “Crash the Super Bowl” ad contest after his “Time Machine” commercial for the chips brand aired during last night’s Super Bowl.
“I’ll let you know when my brain connects,” Anderson, 28, said on “Good Morning America” after hearing his name announced and being presented with the $1 million check.
Anderson, a freelance wedding photographer, says he was inspired to create the ad – which shows a man being invited to try a boy’s cardboard time machine in a ruse so the boy can get his hands on the man’s Doritos – by his own 6-year-old son, Gavin.
“Whenever we watch a movie he always asks me to make something related to it,” Anderson said on “GMA.” “He asked if time travel was real and asked if I could make him a time machine. As I was thinking of a refrigerator box building of it, a light bulb went off.”
Anderson’s “light bulb” idea was one of thousands of commercials submitted from around the world to the Doritos competition. The commercials were narrowed to five finalists and then just two finalists, each of which aired during last night’s game.
All five finalists attended the Super Bowl at New Jersey’s MetLife Stadium, courtesy of Doritos, but none knew whether their ad would be one of two to actually air. The final two finalists were selected by a combination of online votes and the Doritos brand team.
“We waited the whole day to see if our ad would run and we were shocked,” said Amber Gill, a 34-year-old writer-producer whose “Cowboy Kid” commercial finished as runner-up to Anderson’s.
Though Gill did not win the $1 million grand prize, she will not be going home empty-handed.
As the two finalists, both Gill and Anderson will have the opportunity to work with Marvel Studios on the set of the new “Avengers” film, “Marvel’s The Avengers: The Age of Ultron.”