Posted: 5:11 p.m. Monday, Feb. 3, 2014
This is a true Hollywood story if I ever heard one.
When Don Jeanes left Texas to pursue acting in Los Angeles a few years ago, he thought getting three lines in Transformers 3: Dark of the Moon would be his big break in 2011.
For a year, he sat waiting for the phone to ring. He was bartending to pay the bills and he tells RumorFix exclusively,”I was 32 and couldn’t get work. I couldn’t take it anymore. After working on acting for 10 years, I couldn’t take the grind anymore.”
So when Don went back to Houston for Christmas 2012, he told his family that he was planning to move back in February. But a phone call during the holidays derailed those plans.
”Hey you booked the Budweiser commercial,” his agent told him, but the hunky actor had no idea that the spot was for the Super Bowl last year, so he thought, “OK this will be my last one.”
But the surprises kept coming. While he was shooting the ad, “My bartending job emailed me and said the bar, Faux Pas Bistro, is shutting down.”
Don didn’t have any time to worry about losing his job, because right after he shot his first Budweiser commercial the director, Jake Scott (Ridley Scott’s son), got him booked on a Kia commercial.
With all the new excitement about his career, he says, “There was no time to reconsider. I’ve been working steadily since then!” And, yes, he said goodbye to those bartending jobs.
Since then he’s shot several films including Hell Beast, Dark Amazon and Blackout and, of course, he still stars in commercials like playing a cowboy in Bacardi’s Cube Libre.
But it’s this year’s sequel to last year’s Budweiser commercial, that is solidifying Don’s star status.
Besides the 96.88 million people who watched the Super Bowl on Sunday, more than 37 million people have seen the commercial on YouTube.
“You can’t buy that kind of exposure,” Don tells us then he corrects himself, “Oh yeah you can — but it will cost you $4 million, then another $1 million to shoot the commercial!”
While Don can’t talk about how much he got paid to do the spot, he did reveal that five or six puppies were used in the commercial. “One was better at jumping up on people, one was better at sitting still and one was better at running,” he adds. But, the actors were told they couldn’t pet the dogs, because it would distract them.
“They are just sacks with joy — droopy eyes and saggy bellies,” he says. “It’s like having a tray of warm chocolate chip cookies, but not being allowed to eat them.”
Continuing with the theme of the commercial, Don tells us, all of the puppies were placed in loving home.
And, of course, we had to ask three last questions
Looking back at the past year, Don gets a little choked up. “I’m a full time actor,” he says, “The dream has been realized. I feel really lucky it’s almost emotional how cool it is!”