Did somebody say McDonald’s? The University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) Bruin Marching Band appeared in a commercial as a marching band that deserved a break and said, “I’m lovin’ it!” to some Chicken McNuggets.
“We received a call from a casting company asking if we would be willing to be in a commercial,” says Keith Kupper, assistant band director. “As the technical advisor, I created the drill for the overhead shot, and I advised the [commercial’s] director on what I thought would look best on camera for the close-ups. We had a rehearsal two nights before the shoot where the director and advising team had us show them what we were capable of.”
Casting directors interviewed students from “The Solid Gold Sound” to determine which of them would get to act in the close-up shots. On the day of filming, the band arrived at 8 p.m. and rehearsed and filmed different formations, then filmed the close-up shots until its dinner break at midnight.
“After dinner we went into the shot where the band is surrounding the table of Chicken McNuggets and asking for a few from the ‘hero girl,’” Kupper says. “We finished the shoot at about 5:30 a.m. and departed back for UCLA where students had class the next day.”
The students received typical union scale pay including some overtime. According to Kupper the students were enthusiastic despite the cold temperatures and long hours.
“The casting agency and producers were so happy to have us and were so complimentary of our continuous enthusiasm throughout the morning hours,” Kupper says. “They repeatedly told me what a great group of students we have and how wonderful they were to work with.”
The airing of the commercial corresponded with bowl game frenzy, including during the Tournament of Roses Parade. The UCLA Band recently appeared in films such as “500 Days of Summer” (2009), “Click” (2006) and “Gridiron Gang” (2006).