While major sports fans may have been aware that former NFL quarterback Peyton Manning enjoys occasionally playing golf, what they don’t know is that Manning also stars in the cult classic golf film Caddyshack.
Well, not exactly. But a new Michelob Ultra promo for The Match: Champions for Charity, which Manning is playing in on Sunday, his face is superimposed onto Caddyshack character Judge Elihu Smails, which was played by Ted Knight. In the movie, Smails is also a golfer involved in a high-stakes four-person match.
Michelob Ultra worked with Manning to get the video and audio necessary to paste his face into scenes from the movie using deepfake technology. In a spot released on social media today, Manning delivers Smails’ iconic “Well, we’re waiting!” line from the end of the movie.
Another movie clip featuring a deepfake Manning will drop on social before The Match on Sunday.
With all major sports leagues on hold for the time being, The Match has suddenly become the most exciting televised sporting event in months.
Golf legends Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson are getting a rematch after their pay-per-view faceoff in 2018, but this time they’ve got the added talents of Manning and fellow NFL quarterback Tom Brady. Woods and Manning will play a socially distant round of golf against Mickelson and Brady with remote commentary and no physical audience. They’ll also have to be their own caddies.
“We really liked that idea of creating something that would be light-hearted, that would convey this point of view of Michelob Ultra around enjoyment,” said Michelob Ultra vp Ricardo Marques. He also said he hopes that engaging with fans on social leading up to The Match will help to drive excitement for the event itself.
Marques added that engaging with consumers throughout this “ramp-up stage” is something that has been a growing trend around big sporting events, which is even more important in a time when most sports have been canceled.
Michelob Ultra will air nine spots during the game. In addition to the deepfake spots, the beer brand is also promoting a sweepstake that gives fans the opportunity to win a fancy Michelob Ultra golf cart and other merchandise. To enter, fans have to follow the brand on Twitter and use the hashtags #ULTRAPrizeScramble and #Sweepstakes.
As for the charity aspect of the event, the golfers and WarnerMedia are collectively donating $10 million to Covid-19 relief efforts. Michelob Ultra will also be donating $150,000 to the American Red Cross.