Over the months we’ve spotlighted ads for beer and automobiles and breakfast cereal, but today we present to you a film that is advertising advertising. This mostly live-action film produced by the Fred A. Niles company is all about how television advertising actually improves your quality of life. To me, one of the big benefits of TV commercials is that without them you would have to wait until your show was over if you had to use the lavatory. For some reason, the host fails to mention this.
They attempt to illustrate their points by showing several existing spots. Three of them are animated. The first one starts at the 00:48 second mark, and was produced by Playhouse Pictures. It’s for the Ford Motor Company, and is called “Just the Commercial.” It was directed by Bill Melendez, written by Chris Jenkyns, designed by Sterling Sturdevant, and animated by Herman Cohen and Bob Carlson.
A very high-style animated spot for Union Carbide appears at the 08:46 mark. I’m not certain who produced this one but I think it may be from Pelican Films.
At the 18:49 mark is another Playhouse spot. This one was made for the Navy and it’s called “Dog and Cat.” It was written by Chris Jenkyns, and directed and animated by Robert Cannon. Herschel Bernardi and Byron Kane speak.
The live-action spots include an extra long plug for General Electric starring Ronny Reagan (at 01:32 and featuring a piece of stock music known as “Hicksville” which should be familiar to fans of Quick Draw McGraw) plus one of Stan Freberg’s Chun King spots starring Jesse White and a very young Arte Johnson (at 19:40.)
As a special bonus we present to you some of Chris Jenkyns’ sketches for “Just the Commercial.” The first one is a very rough sketch where Chris was just jotting the idea down…
Next we have a more complete storyboard. This one was probably used to present the idea to the client. (click thumbnails below to enlarge). And below that, a production still from the final film.