Coke Zero Remakes ‘Mean Joe’ Super Bowl Spot

NEW YORK Coke Zero will air a 30-second spot on the Super Bowl that remakes Coca-Cola’s classic “Mean Joe Greene” commercial from 1980.

The new ad was created by Crispin Porter + Bogusky. It mimics the tone and action of the original, but casts Pittsburgh Steeler Troy Polamalu in Greene’s role.

In the updated version, a young fan follows a limping Polamalu to the locker room and offers him a Coke Zero. The spot then takes an undisclosed twist that illustrates to viewers that it is possible to have, “Real Coke taste and zero calories,” the client said.

The original “is one of the most famous commercials of all time, so I was blown away when they asked me to be in this new spot,” said Polamalu, in a statement. “I think people will get a kick out of the intensity I display to get my hands on the real Coke taste of Coke Zero.”

Following its Super Bowl debut, “Mean Troy” will also air as a 60-second cinema commercial.

Crispin is the Miami-based shop that engineered controversial and buzz-building promos for Burger King (“Whopper Sacrifice” and “Whopper Virgins”); Domino’s Pizza (its ongoing sandwich battle with Subway); and Microsoft (the Jerry Seinfeld-Bill Gates videos and subsequent “I’m a PC” effort).

Adweek this month named Crispin, a unit of MDC Partners, its U.S. Agency of the Year for 2008.