Budweiser’s 4th of July Ad Gives Chills for Some, Mixed Emotions for Others
There are mixed emotions over Budweiser's latest ad featuring Bill Pullman.
The company posted the ad on Twitter this week, and the comments section has responses from all over the world. For some, though, it might cause a bit of cognitive dissonance: On one hand, it is a chill-inducing, bravado-filled show of patriotism and American Pride. On the other hand, it promotes receiving the coronavirus vaccine.
The speech is reminiscent of Pullman's speech as President Thomas J. Whitmore in the blockbuster film Independence Day. It was the speech he gave to fighter pilots and others as they readied to engage alien invaders who had come to take over the earth.
In that speech, Pullman (as Whitmore) declared:
And should we win the day, the Fourth of July will no longer be known as an American holiday, but as the day when the world declared in one voice: “We will not go quietly into the night! President Thomas J. Whitmore, Independence Day, from Happyscribe
Here is the clip from the movie:
According to a recent story from the Hollywood Reporter, people have been trying to get Pullman to recreate the character and speech for products/projects for several years now, to (almost) no avail. The reason? Pullman felt that it would be "violating" the original. Fair enough.
So, what was it that Budweiser did to convince him to revive the role of Whitmore for a beer commercial? They geared the commercial toward defeating COVID-19 by encouraging people to get the coronavirus vaccine. And by making a donation to a coronavirus vaccine charity organization.
According to the Hollywood Reporter, the original Budweiser idea had more of a "the coronavirus pandemic is in the rear-view mirror, let's party" feel, and Pullman wasn't comfortable with that. He tweaked the script, sent it back to the Bud team, and they said, "We like it".
Pullman's idea was to encourage people to get together to celebrate but to also remind people that the work against COVID isn't yet done, as we still have a fight ahead of us.
The Budweiser commercial has a real "come together as Americans" feel, as Pullman uses phrases like "whether you drive a pick-up or a hybrid... pronounce it 'America' or 'Murica'... we're all Americans". He talks about how we might all be on a different page, but we are "reading from the same book". And, as "we" did in the Independence Day film, he encourages us to all come together to help those who are less fortunate, and whose fates lie in the balance, a line that appears to refer to those in countries who are struggling to receive the vaccine.
"Let's work together towards a future where everyone can come to the party", another line referring to helping everyone get vaccinated against COVID-19 comes before Pullman declares that this Independence Day should be about declaring independence from "this thing that will rue the day it ever messed with us" - again, referring to the coronavirus.
Reaction to the commercial has been mixed:
RmPerry didn't mince his words above - it appears that he really doesn't care for AB promoting the vaccine. James B. Webb appears to like the ad, but the beer? Not so much.
Marlise was disappointed in the commercial, thinking that it didn't go far enough:
And RA asked a question, but I don't quite know where he/she is going with it:
As I continued to scroll through the comments on Twitter, though, it became apparent that there are many more people on that platform who are applauding Budweiser for their efforts than not.
This Bud's for you.
LOOK: 40 Discontinued & Special Edition Kellogg's Cereals
Check Out the Best-Selling Album From the Year You Graduated High School
Great Uses for Silica Gel Packs