In anticipation of tonight’s Monday Night Football (ESPN, 8:15 ET) game showcasing the New England Patriots against the Kansas City Chiefs, ESPN has debuted a “This is SportsCenter” ad starring Patriots kicker Stephen Gostkowski alongside ESPN Senior Vice President and Director of News Vince Doria.
Titled “Icing,” the 30-second commercial (above) depicts Gostkowski nervously preparing for his performance review with Doria, who “ices” the kicker by delaying the meeting. The spot was created in collaboration with Wieden + Kennedy New York.
Front Row spoke with Gostkowski about joining the “This is SportsCenter” franchise, his potential new acting career and filming alongside Doria, one of the campaign’s recurring stars.
How was the experience of coming to Bristol and being a part of the “This is SportsCenter” campaign?
I thought it was amazing. I’ve always loved the commercials and it was pretty cool to get asked to be a part of one. I thought it would only take 30 minutes, but it took over three hours to get 30 seconds of footage. Crazy how much the director reminded me of a football coach telling everyone where to be and how to do things.
What did you think of the theme of the spot – freezing a kicker?
I thought it was very clever. Everyone knows about icing the kicker and it was fun to make fun of myself and the position I play because there is a lot of walking around rehearsing on the sidelines during the game. But the next time I get iced, I’m not going let it affect me like it did in the commercial.
Have you had any previous experience acting?
No real previous experience, but if anyone likes it and needs an actor who has no shame I’m always available.
How was filming with Vince Doria? He’s been in several of these spots, did he give you any acting tips?
It was great. I remembered him from other commercials, especially the rally monkey one. He has one of those faces that whatever he does, it’s hard not to smile. That’s the power of a great mustache. He was very friendly, helpful and a great person.
Some of what you might have missed over the weekend. . .
1. Temple University celebrated ESPN’s baseball news editor, veteran journalist and alumna Claire Smith, a recipient of its 2014 Lew Klein Alumni in the Media Award.
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Sheldon Spencer contributed to this post