Carl's Jr. Did Not Copy TouchBlue's 'Knight School'
We were going to leave this one alone but since it's beginning to appear in a few places, we feel it's necessary to cover (with facts, no less). So, here goes. We received an email earlier this week suggesting a recent Carl's Jr. Chili Cheeseburger commercial which aired during the Oscars was quite similar to a video, Knight School, that "aired" in 2005.
The creators of the Knight School video, TouchBlue, claim the creators of the Carl's Jr. spot, Mendelsohn Zien Advertising, stole their idea. And so the classic copy cat story was born.
With the somewhat self-absorbed assumption everyone has seen the Knight School video and that food on the face is some sort of original idea, TouchBlue's Rene has sounded off in a video of his own snarking the commercial's creators and asking viewers for their opinion on the matter.
Because we didn't want to run with TouchBlue's assumption Mendelsohn Zien blatantly copied their idea or let a few blog posts and YouTube comments turn this into something more than it is, we contacted the agency, pointed them to the Knight School video and asked if anyone at the agency had seen it prior to creating the Carl's Jr. commercial.
Mendelsohn Zien Advertising Group Account Director Cathy Kellner-Diaz told us, "We did not see or hear about the video prior to developing or producing our Carl's Jr. Chili Cheeseburger spot."
Kellner-Diaz adds, "The idea of having food on your face is a universal human truth that everyone in world has personally experienced. And the comedic premise of trying to figure out where something is on your face has been featured in numerous mainstream films such as The Naked Gun, Something about Mary and Tommy Boy."
And just so everyone is clear about Carl's Jr. and the company's relationship to food on the face, Kellner-Diaz said, "More importantly, if any brand owns getting stuff on your face, it's Carl's Jr., the people that came out with the idea of 'If it doesn't get all over the place, it doesn't belong in your face' 13 years ago. In the trillions of videos out there in internet-land, there are bound do be some similarities."
Oh we can hear it now. There will be the usual suspects who will continue to cry fowl and just say the agency is lying. We won't buy it. As one YouTube commenter said "If Carl's Jr. taped the Chili Cheese Burger to his face (which is what TouchBlue did in their video), you (TouchBlue) may have an argument there."
There's no story here. This is a coincidence pure and simple.