Jake and Rosario Dawson Get Frightened in State Farm and Haunted Mansion Collaboration

By Kyle O'Brien 

Jake from State Farm deals with a lot of client problems, which he usually solves with a calm ease. But the insurance spokes-character hasn’t come up against ghosts and ghouls before.

In a new collaboration between State Farm and Walt Disney Studios, Jake teams with Rosario Dawson, who plays Gabbie, the new owner of the Haunted Mansion in the film of the same name, and the two get an awful fright as they discuss insurance options.

The Haunted Mansion, which comes out later this month, is the setting for a spot was created by The Marketing Arm (TMA), along with the Walt Disney Studios and Haunted Mansion team and Soapbox, Disney production house.

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“Supporting Disney’s The Haunted Mansion is a great opportunity to highlight how State Farm is there for our customers’ ‘what ifs’ through the magic of Disney,” said Patty Morris, avp, marketing, State Farm in a statement. “We are always exploring new and exciting ways to reach consumers and demonstrate the quality of service State Farm provides.”

The new spot, “Property Damage,” is part of State Farm’s ongoing “What if” campaign, which leans into the concerns people have around the potential outcomes of homeownership. The action sees Jake from State Farm walking with Gabbie and explaining how State Farm can help with her insurance needs, including talking to an agent and filing a claim on the State Farm mobile app.

The conversation is constantly interrupted by ghostly portraits, falling chandeliers and a very creepy ghost organist, and the usually staid Jake is clearly rattled.

“The typical approach is to build a spot using clips and greenscreen. But in our view, that creates a nearly invisible partnership, and the brand always takes a backseat to the movie,” said Harris Wilkinson, chief creative officer of TMA in a statement. “So instead, we rebuilt a portion of the set, right down to the smallest details, we matched the color grade and cinematography of the film, and of course we brought Rosario Dawson back to play Gabbie.”

Wilkinson went on to say that when the two characters interact, it doesn’t feel like a usual “What if” commercial, but more like a scene from the film, which helps create cultural relevance.

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