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Andy Warhol had it his way in Burger King Super Bowl commercial

JoAnne Klimovich Harrop
| Monday, Feb. 4, 2019, 3:24 p.m.

We all know Pittsburgh native Andy Warhol had a fondness for Campbell’s Soup.

On Sunday, we learned about his love of hamburgers.

Burger King debuted a new 45-second Super Bowl commercial featuring a nearly silent film of the iconic pop artist eating a Whopper sandwich. The film simply showed Warhol sitting at a desk, opening a vintage Burger King bag, taking out a Whopper sandwich and eating it.

The pop icon poured some Heinz ketchup next to the burger. He dipped the burger in the ketchup and took a bite.

“This is great,” said Geralyn Huxley, curator of film and video at The Andy Warhol Museum on Pittsburgh’s North Side. “We have had that clip on display in the museum on the fourth floor since 2014. People are talking about it. I guess we will have to make sure the gallery attendants point it out to museum visitors.”

She said the piece also highlighted locally made Heinz ketchup. Warhol had some difficulty shaking the ketchup out of the bottle.

“It doesn’t come out,” he said as he shook the bottle.

“He liked people being in front of the camera being how they are,” Huxley said. “He would be over the moon with this, I think.”

Warhol was a person who liked to be seen as doing everyday things, such as eating a burger, said Huxley.

“Andy Warhol changed art,” Huxley said. “He took pop-culture imagery and put it out there, and people could relate to his art. He started the worship of the celebrity such as Marilyn (Monroe), Liz (Taylor) and Elvis (Presley).”

The Super Bowl commercial took 37 years to make, according to a news release from Burger King. The original clip was created by Denmark director Jorgen Leth in 1982 as part of the film “66 Scenes from America.” The film was a visual narrative of iconic scenes that represent American reality. See the whole 4:38 minute video .

It was selected as one of the 10 best Super Bowl commercials by the Washington Post .

“What we love about Andy is what he represents as an art icon and his message is about the democratization of art,” said Marcelo Pascoa, head of global marketing for Burger King. “Just like his art, America’s Favorite Burger, the Whopper, is for everyone. Our commercial is an invitation for everyone in America to Eat Like Andy (#EatLikeAndy).”

JoAnne Harrop is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact JoAnne at 724-853-5062 or jharrop@tribweb.com or via Twitter @Jharrop_Trib.

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