“Maggie Hardy Magerko, owner and president of 84 Lumber, a little-known Pennsylvania-based building material supplier, has been called crazy for buying 90 seconds of airtime on the Super Bowl—a telecast that’s been commanding ad rates of over $5 million for 30 seconds.
Then she went and gave the ad a political theme. And not just any political theme. It’s about immigration, at a time when the issue couldn’t be more divisive.
Fox rejected its original script, so the company and its agency, Brunner in Pittsburgh, divided the piece into two parts. A 90-second section of the short film—a teaser, essentially—just aired on Super Bowl LI. The conclusion was posted to journey84.com.
And a remarkable conclusion it is. Watch it here:
The vision of the giant wall, which of course is not yet built; the American flag that the girl pieces together; the enormous doorway, which is what the workers were building; the onscreen line “The will to succeed will always be welcome here”—it all adds up to a very poetic pro-immigration statement of tolerance.
That message, of course, is one that will be embraced widely by many—and rejected angrily by others. And it will likely make Budweiser and Audi’s mild ad controversies over the past week pale in comparison.
In the run-up to the Super Bowl, Magerko said the ad shouldn’t be considered provocative at all. In fact, she says she voted for Donald Trump in the election, and the image of the door in the wall comes directly from Trump himself, who said he wanted a “big beautiful door” in his wall, for legal immigration. (See the video below.)”
Go over to Adweek at the link to read the full story and watch the entire commercial.