'Michael CeraVe' Wins Super Clio as the Big Game's Best Ad

Funny stuff from Ogilvy North America

Just call him Michel CeraVe from now on. And remember: Human skin is his passion.

Arrested Development and Superbad actor Michael Cera scaled cliffs with lotioned hands, gave himself a freaky massage and won the hearts of Super Bowl LVIII viewers in a satirical spot that capped off a brilliant brand campaign.

Dubbed "Michael CeraVe" and preceded by an impressive teaser blitz from the skincare company, the :30 netted the Super Clio from the Clio Awards, which recognizes the Big Game's most creative commercial.

Michael CeraVe

Ogilvy North America developed the initiative; Tim Heidecker and Eric Wareheim directed.

"Let my cream hydrate you," Cera enthuses in the spot, which takes the form of a pitch from Michael, as he tries to convince CeraVe that his name offers "a perfect crossover opportunity."

Indeed it did! The push provides meta commentary without seeming heavy-handed or forced. CeraVe built enviable anticipation for the 1st-quarter drop—and delivered. 

"It gets harder and harder to capture consumers' attention each year, but viewership for live sports, especially NFL football, continues to grow," says Clio Awards CEO Nicole Purcell. "An audience as large as the Super Bowl is rare, so brands and advertisers are under a lot of pressure to deliver a spot that has a cultural impact and generates buzz."

Cera's outing accomplished that mission, enjoying copious coverage leading into SBLVIII and enthusiastic social chatter when the ad broke.

Ultimately, CeraVe accomplished what most Super Bowl brands set out to do these days. It crafted an event of its own, extending the hype funnel beyond an in-game buy and stoking consumer conversations in fab fashion.

"Everyone is putting forth their best work in the same arena, and with the Super Clio, we celebrate the people taking bold creative risk," says Purcell. "This award signifies that their peers and the leaders at the top of their industry saw their idea as the best of the best. It's an incredible honor to be recognized this way and we love to share in the excitement of such an accomplishment."

WPP Global CCO Rob Reilly has served as the Super Clio's non-voting jury commissioner since the special award launched a decade ago.

Here's the full list of 2024 jurors:

  • Bianca Guimaraes, Partner & Executive Creative Director, Mischief
  • Danilo Boer, Global Creative Partner, FCB Global
  • David Kolbusz, CCO, Orchard
  • Esi Eggleston Bracey, Chief Growth and Marketing Officer, Unilever
  • Greg Harrison, Chief Creative Officer, MOCEAN
  • Islam ElDessouky, Global Vice President Creative for Coca-Cola, The Coca-Cola Company
  • Jason Campbell, CCO, Translation
  • Jason LaFlore, Creative Director, 72andSunny
  • Keith Cartwright, Founder & Chief Creative Officer, Cartwright
  • Kerstin Emhoff, CEO, PRETTYBIRD
  • Kristin McHugh, SVP & Chief Brand Officer, Verizon
  • Margaret Johnson, Chief Creative Officer and Partner, Goodby Silverstein & Partners
  • Myra Nussbaum, CCO & President, Havas Chicago
  • Rafa Rizuto, Chief Creative Officer US-Hispanic LATAM, Dentsu Creative
  • Samira Ansari, Chief Creative Officer, New York, Ogilvy
  • Shannon Washington, Global CCO, gotham
  • Walter Geer, Chief Creative Officer, Innovation North America, VML

CLICK HERE to watch all of this year's Super Bowl commercials. 

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