Pizza Chain Comes Off the Sidelines for Super Bowl

According to the New York Times, “Papa John’s International, which will advertise for the first time during a Super Bowl game, plans to run a commercial that may not look to many viewers like one.”

“The spot, scheduled to appear near the two-minute warning of the first half, will feature John Schnatter, the company’s founder, delivering pizzas to the people behind the scenes at Super Bowl XLIV on Feb. 7 — the on-field line painters, for example. The commercial will be filmed on Sunday during the Pro Bowl by NFL Films for that in-the-game look. Because the Super Bowl will be played in the same venue as the Pro Bowl, when the commercial appears during the Super Bowl it may seem as if it is taking place live. The commercial is part of an agreement by Papa John’s to become the official pizza sponsor of the National Football League and of Super Bowl XLIV. Papa John’s made the deal to run the spot with the N.F.L. rather than with CBS, which is broadcasting the game.”

“Super Bowl Sunday is typically the busiest day of the year for pizza purveyors, but in recent years the pizza chains have run commercials before the game begins rather than in the game. Pizza Hut, which competes against Papa John’s, plans to run a spot during the pregame show, before the kickoff. The Pizza Hut spot will be the chain’s first work from its new agency, the Martin Agency in Richmond, Va., part of the Interpublic Group of Companies.”