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Everyone but Jon Hamm has a show or movie on Apple TV

Apple TV’s hilarious new ad features one mad man.

Everyone but Jon Hamm has a show or movie on Apple TV
Jon Hamm for Apple.

Apple may have spent billions on original Apple TV content last year, but none of it included Jon Hamm. And the former Mad Men star is not happy about it.

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In a new ad for Apple TV, Hamm is scrolling through the streamer’s catalog, running down the laundry list of Hollywood stars, and wondering why he isn’t among them.

For 2022, Wells Fargo estimates that Apple will spend $8.1 billion on content, and it’s reportedly putting about $500 million into marketing Apple TV. At least Hamm got in on the latter action. And Hamm brings up a good point here, as it’s been a while since we’ve seen him in a major starring role. Sure there have been the appearances on Curb Your Enthusiasm last year, and his voice has been around in animated shows like Bless The Harts and Marvel’s M.O.D.O.K. But it’s not the same.

This approach of everyday-ing a celebrity isn’t new for Apple. We’ve had Taylor Swift on a treadmill and a girls’ hangout with Kerry Washington, Taraji P. Henson, and Mary J. Blige for Apple Music. We’ve seen Bill Hader and Samuel L. Jackson at home with Siri. Unexpected peeks into the everyday (commercial) lives of popular, seemingly random, celebs.

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In reality, it’s not random at all, but perhaps a strategic teaser to seed excitement for Hamm’s upcoming 2022 films like Top Gun: Maverick and Confess, Fletch.

As a marketing approach, the spot achieves several things all at once. Obviously, it’s entertaining, but it also uses Hamm’s jokes to remind us of the star power and content library Apple TV has built so far. As the content arms race continues to drive the streaming wars, streamers Netflix, Amazon, Disney, and Apple use marketing to pitch their prestige not just to us as viewers, but to stars, producers, and creators like Hamm himself.

He certainly appears sold. And it’s hard to deny that Hamm would fit right in with Apple’s current lineup. Slap a generous mustache on his face, and you’ve got a perfect look for Ted’s brother . . . Randy Lasso.

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About the author

Jeff Beer is a staff editor at Fast Company, covering advertising, marketing, and brand creativity.

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