It's been a good long time since O.J. Simpson was an advertising star. ("Is O.J. still the spokesman for Hertz? Not exactly," as the old joke goes.) And he's not likely to return anytime soon. Whatever shock value he might potentially bring to an ad role today, the prospect of backlash would surely give pause to even the most stunt-loving ad agency.
But Simpson still brightens to the subject of advertising, as Shoptalk discovered while sharing a drink with him last week after a chance encounter at the bar inside The Mutiny Hotel in Miami. Simpson was alone, drinking scotch on the rocks and cheering for Tiger Woods in the Masters, and had just returned from Los Angeles after the funeral of his lawyer, Johnnie Cochran. (Simpson has a home in Miami but keeps a room at the Coconut Grove hotel to be near his girlfriend, he said.)
The conversation turned from football to teenage daughters (his is attending Boston University—which is expensive, Simpson hastened to point out) to journalism and more. Upon learning our place of employment, Simpson immediately brought up his longtime gig with Hertz. He was also curious about Crispin Porter + Bogusky, which is a block from the hotel and was the reason for Shoptalk's visit. Somehow, though, we doubt even the most unorthodox CP+B campaign would find room for the Juice.