Budweiser‘s Clydesdale parade at the XLI Super Bowl tells the story of a down and out dog who gets the chance to ride as a Dalmatian on the traditional Budweiser coach. The spot opens with a sense of poignancy as a white mongrel dog looks longingly through a butcher’s front window. He’s shooed away by the butcher, with a warning bark from an unfriendly black dog. As he stops to watch the Budweiser stagecoach process through town he notices a Dalmatian dog sitting by the driver. Before he knows it he’s dirtied by muddy puddle water from a passing car. One look in the window is all he needs to inspire him for his step up in life.
Download Dean Martin singing Ain’t That A Kick In The Head at iTunes
Look out for the dog’s wink up on the stagecoach, as well as the impact the dog has on the woman who hugs him. Listen out for Dean Martin’s rendition of “Ain’t That A Kick In The Head”.
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The Clydesdale horses were formally introduced to Anheuser-Busch on April 7, 1933, to celebrate the repeal of Prohibition. August A. Busch Jr. sent his father Adolphus Busch a wagon of beer pulled by an eight-hitch team. Along the way the wagon delivered a case of Budweiser beer to the Governor of New York who had been influential in repealing the prohibition.
The Dalmatian dog was introduced to the traditional Budweiser Clydesdale procession on March 30, 1950 to celebrate the opening of the Newark brewery. According to Pioneer Days, Dalmatians were bred and trained to protect the horses and guard the wagon when the driver went inside to make deliveries. Today, the Dalmatians are perched atop the wagon, seated next to the driver any time the Budwesier Clydesdales make an appearance, including the Rose Parade, the Super Bowl, and the Winter Olympics.
“For the most part, each Clydesdale hitch, including the hamlets at our breweries and our theme parks, have two Dalmatians each,” said Jim Poole, general manager for Clydesdale Operations. “We usually pair a new puppy with an older dog so they can learn the ropes and they are acclimated to the horses very early on. We have almost an equal number of male versus female dogs and each puppy is obedience trained.”
According to Poole, the dogs and horses create a strong bond. The Dalmatians are very compatible with the horses and even sleep with them in the stables at night.
“People really love the Dalmatians,” added Poole. “Along with the Clydesdales, they are another great tradition and symbol for Anheuser-Busch.”
The Budweiser Spot ad was developed at DDB Chicago by managing director/creative Paul Tilley, group creative director/copywriter Barry Burdiak, creative director/art director John Hayes, copywriter Patrick Knoll and senior producer Kate Hildebrant.
Filming was directed by Joe Pytka at Pytka Productions, Venice, California.
Editor was David Baxter at Panic and Bob, Toronto. Visual effects were developed at AXYZ, Toronto. Sound and music were designed at Elias Arts. Audio was mixed by Loren Silber at Lime Studios, Santa Monica.