PETE GARDNER – MOUSTACHE GUY
Already the description of him as “moustache guy” should be causing your brain to zero in on what you know him from, a concept not at all lost on Pete Gardner, whose website logo is a disembodied cartoon cookie duster. One of his more notable—and current at the time of this writing—projects is Juicy Fruit‘s “Armpit Fart” ad, because nothing says “Yum!” like the underarm moisture necessary to produce a sound when squeezed. But Pete is actually an accomplished character actor with 70 credits over the course of a career that goes back to the late ’70s. So, barring any unforeseen slips of the razor, there’s no reason to think we won’t see Pete in plenty more ads that need a goofy, middle-aged dad-type guy. Not to mentionLaw & Order: SVU—just grow out the handles on that thing, Pete, and you’re a shoe-in for “Back Alley Predator.”
JOHN HODGMAN – PC
DIANE AMOS – THE PINE SOL LADY
Diane Amos became “The Pine Sol Lady” in 1993 and she’s actually still doing it, although the ads seem less frequent at the time of this writing than they did throughout the 1990s and early 2000s. She’s also a stand-up comic and actress. That is, if you can call nine bit parts in the last 15 years being an actress. But how much auditioning would you put up with if you had steady floor cleaner money rolling in? She’s also on Twitter, but somehow only has 106 followers, which is kind of appalling considering Kylie Jenner has 11.7 million. Apparently social media values the thoughts of a narcissistic teenager over a woman who just wants to help you keep a spotless kitchen.
DAVID LEISURE – JOE ISUZU
WENDY KAUFMAN – THE SNAPPLE LADY
Wendy Kaufman stumbled into her star-making gig as Snapple’s Long Island Delta Burke completely by accident. In 1990, she was actually working in the company’s billing department, where, according to Wikipedia, she began answering customers’ letters, because “nobody in the office wanted to do it themselves.” Naturally, an ad executive noticed this and thought “Yeah, that’s a good idea for which I’ll now get paid handsomely by pretending it was my own,” and “The Snapple Lady” was born. It was a good ride for five or six years until Quaker Oats bought the company and apparently decided they couldn’t justify the expense of fake flowers and blazers with shoulder pads. Kaufman tried to get back behind the oddly high counter in the late-2000s until negotiations with Cadbury Schweppes (Snapple’s then-parent company) broke down. Around that time she appeared on the weight loss reality show, Celebrity Fit Club, as well as a bunch of those “Hey, Remember This Stuff?” shows that VH1 would cast with literally anyone recognizable from the ’90s. IMDb now has two current movie credits listed for Wendy, so she’s right on pace with her working-a-little-every-decade-or-so plan.
JERRY LAMBERT – THE SONY VP
DEMETRI GORITSAS – THE INSANE SLIM JIM GUY
Remember those completely crazy Slim Jim commercials where a single bite of the spicy meat-ish stick would send a lunatic banging around the stomach walls like a straight-jacketed mental patient? Well, Demetri Goritsas was that lunatic, and even though his voice in those spots was enough to make you want to…snap (Get it? Sorry), he’s gone on to a pretty respectable career of character acting as well as voice-over work. Demetri also narrates some pretty heavy documentaries, lending gravitas to subjects like the Nepal earthquake and whatever horrifying things “doomsday volcanoes” are. That’s really not bad, especially considering Bryan Cranston went from a Preparation H commercial to winning an Emmy. With Demetri recently landing a role in the big budget action/adventure, Everest, his prospects are looking pretty good.
WHATEVER HAPPENED TO THESE 7 FAMOUS COMMERCIAL ACTORS?