01/15/12 — Doritos commercial contest

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Doritos commercial contest

By Phyllis Moore
Published in News on January 15, 2012 1:50 AM

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Jason Walston, seated center, a native of Goldsboro, stars in one of the five commercials chosen as finalists in the Doritos Crash The Super Bowl contest, with the top vote-getter in the online contest being played during the Super Bowl. Also pictured from left are Nate Watkin, co-creator of the commercial, Brad Scott, co-creator, and Reid Fenlaw, front, who also acted in the commercial.

An aspiring actor from Goldsboro is featured in one of five Doritos commercials in the running to be aired during the Super Bowl.

Jason Walston, 26, appears in "Hot Wild Girls," one of five consumer-created commercials vying for $1 million and a contract to do a second commercial.

This is the sixth year for the Doritos Crash the Super Bowl contest. More than 6,100 entries were received this year, then narrowed down to the five finalists, announced Jan. 4.

From now through Jan. 29, online voting will determine the winners. The top two spots will air during Super Bowl XLVI but only the top vote-getter will earn the $1 million prize.

Walston graduated from Wayne Country Day School in 2003 and majored in music at Elon University, graduating from there in 2007. Since 2010, he has lived in Denver, Colo., where he does a "combination of things," including freelance TV production, acting and stand-up comedy.

"I wrote and acted in a couple short films last year," he said, including one which garnered an award for acting and writing.

The 24-Hour Film Festival in May, he said, gave entrants 24 hours to write, shoot and edit a film. He took fourth place internationally, he said.

He hired an agent to help with his career, which led to his current role in the Doritos commercial.

"I just auditioned for it (in October)," he said. "It was filmed in November. The shoot was five hours on a Saturday."

According to the website for adweek.com, featuring the five finalists, "Hot Wild Girls" is described as one of three commercials "that really stood out." Its two "doofus dudes" are well-cast, the site said, and the "bro-banter is righteously inane."

Walston, too, said he thought the production turned out well.

He said he learned mid-December that the commercial had been chosen as a finalist, but it was not made public until Jan. 4.

"He wasn't even able to tell us when he was here at Christmas," said his mother, Jane Walston, director of exceptional children's program with Wayne County Public Schools. Dad, John Walston, is a Goldsboro attorney.

Since the Crash the Super Bowl contest began in 2007, the commercials have consistently ranked among the top five spots on the traditional USA Today Ads Meter and two of the last three years have scored the No. 1 position, officials said.

Each of the five finalist ad makers will win $25,000 and a trip to Indianapolis to attend the Super Bowl, where the top two ads will be announced.

While Walston will miss out on the trip, he said it has still been an enjoyable ride since the spot went viral.

"It's been kind of wild," he said earlier this week. "We have just had a lot of, like, random places showing all five of them and reviewing them, MSNBC and seeing them talk about us on news outlets."

And even though he was not one of the ad's creators, the possibility of success -- for him as well as the commercial -- are promising.

"I'm really confident of our chances," he said. "And if I got more acting work out of it, I would be pretty happy about it."

To view the commercial or vote, visit www.crash thesuperbowl.com.