Minerva man sees another minute of fame in Super Bowl ad

By Kimberly Lewis The Press-News Published:

Like the "Island of Misfit Toys," Volkswagen has gathered the Internet's most, um, interesting YouTube sensations to "show their brighter side" in its Super Bowl ad.

Minerva native Phil Davison became a YouTube sensation in September, 2010, after his impassioned speech to the Stark County Republican Party garnered approximately one million hits. Davison had sought the nomination to run against the Democratic nominee to fill ousted treasurer Gary Zeigler's seat. His six-minute barnstorming speech went viral and his 15 minutes of fame included being interviewed by Inside Edition and Good Morning America, as well as local and national newspapers. He was even given a web redemption on Comedy Central's Tosh.0.

"I thought it was over," Davison said Friday. But a few weeks ago, there was a phone call asking if he would be interested in flying to Los Angeles to film a commercial.

Davison joined other YouTube sensations in a field outside of Los Angeles. One of those was the "Cat Lady" Debbie. "She's into cats. She really likes her cats," he noted.

"It was exciting to meet people who were in the same position. People who had done something a little peculiar and had their 15 minutes of fame," he said.

The commercial teaser features reggae singer Jimmy Cliff singing "C'mon Get Happy."

Davison called Cliff, "one of the nicest people you could ever meet."

But the shoot was not as idyllic as it looked.

"We started at 8 a.m. and it was in the 40s. It was frigid. Some of them were in tanks and T-shirts. They had coats for in-between shots. I was cold and I was in a suit and tie," he noted.

While Davison is featured in Volkswagen's Super Bowl teaser, a Volkswagen was not. Davison said he was never asked to stand by one of the company's vehicles, but expects the final commercial to have a car featured somewhere.

Everyone will learn if he made the cut Sunday, Feb. 3, during the Super Bowl.

"There was no guarantee what it would be used for and if I would be in it," he said.

Davison definitely made the cut for the teaser, earning a call-out from Cliff as the "screaming politician."

"I had my 15 minutes of fame plus another one. So, now I've had my 16 minutes of fame and we'll see how it goes," Davison said.

See Davison and Volkswagen's teaser ad at http://autos.yahoo.com/blogs/motoramic/internet-greatest-video-misfits-star-volkswagen-super-bowl-161557067.html.

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