You could sum up the two week period between the Tampa Bay Buccaneers and Kansas City Chiefs each winning their respective conference championships and their upcoming matchup in Super Bowl LV, in one word: preparation.
Tom Brady’s wife and children left him home alone, meaning 12 days of solitude leading up to the big game. Staff at Raymond James Stadium in Tampa have been diligently putting the final touches on their display and infrastructure. The Weeknd is preparing his pipes for a stellar half-time performance. And countless other celebrities, sportscasters, coaches, and performers are putting in the extra effort to ensure they’re ahead of the game (pun intended).
The event planning industry should be approaching Super Bowl LV— this monumental cultural phenomenon which has come to transcend football— with the same level of preparation. If we don’t, we risk being caught off guard by up and coming stars like the 49ers’ Katie Sowers or celebrities skyrocketing their demand with viral ads like Bryan Cranston in Mountain Dew’s Shining parody.
Luckily for us, this meticulous, forward thinking approach is part of AAE’s DNA. And luckily for the event planners reading this, that means we’ve done all the preparation for you. All you have to do is read on for a rundown of the potential breakout stars of Super Bowl LV.
There were 103,219 people at Super Bowl XLV in 2011— the highest attendance ever for the big game. For the other 162.9 million estimated to have watched the live broadcast, the sportscasters and commentators were an essential part of their experience. It’s the biggest stage for these media professionals, and a solid performance can easily change a career or cement a legacy.
Super Bowl LV will be broadcast live by CBS. Jim Nantz, Tony Romo, Tracy Wolfson and Jay Feely will be on the call for the CBS broadcast. Notably, Romo is also set to appear in a Sketchers ad in which he and his wife Candice Crawford take everything “to the max.” The former Dallas Cowboys quarterback, who has already become widely popular in his relatively short broadcast career thanks to his technical insight and apt predictions, also appeared in a Super Bowl ad campaign for the company in 2019.
According to a 2019 survey, about 20 percent of people say they only watch the Super Bowl for the commercials. That means that out of the estimated 99.99 million viewers of Super Bowl LIV in 2020, there were 20 million who tuned in but weren’t particularly concerned about the outcome of the game.
Though streaming in recent years has taken some of the winds out of TV advertising’s sails, social media has been able to prop up Super Bowl commercials for the foreseeable future thanks to their high viewership and propensity to go viral.
Oftentimes, the ads that achieve the most viral success are the ones that tug at the heartstrings of the millions and millions on the other side of the TV screen. Our research leads us to believe that Toyota has put together a masterpiece of an ad to do just that. The automaker will air a 60-second spot titled “Upstream” in the second quarter of Sunday’s game to tell the story of Paralympic swimmer Jessica Long. Watch the ad for yourself, and you’ll see why more people will be wanting to hear more from Jessica.
Also keep your eyes on these celebrities, athletes, and artists starring in their own commercials on Sunday:
- John Travolta, Martha Stewart, and Leslie David Baker for Scotts and Miracle-Gro
- Will Ferrell, Awkwafina, and Kenan Thompson for GM
- Jason Alexander for Tide
- Maya Rudolph for for Swedish bank Klarna
- Wayne’s World stars Mike Myers and Dana Carvey with Cardi B for Uber Eats
- Brad Garrett for Jimmy John’s
- Michael B. Jordan for Amazon Alexa
- Jerry Rice and Jerome Bettis for Frito-Lay’s
- Matthew McConaughey for Doritos
- Mila Kunis, Ashton Kutcher, and Shaggy for Cheetos
- Lil Nas X for Logitech
- Serena Williams, Anthony Davis, Don Cheadle, and others for Michelob Ultra
- Lenny Kravitz for Stella Artois
- Nick Jonas for Dexcom
- Dan Levy for M&M’s
- John Cena for Mountain Dew
- Oscar winner Damien Chazelle’s ad for Squarespace featuring an altered “5 to 9” by Dolly Parton
- Post Malone, Cedric the Entertainer and other “legends” of Bud Light
- Joe Montana for Guinness
While the bulk of the entertainers involved in Super Bowl LV consists of those featured in pre-recorded commercials, there are a few who have an opportunity to create a viral live performance. Before kickoff, the global audience will get a musical dose of American patriotism. Grammy Award-winning R&B singer-songwriter H.E.R. will perform “America The Beautiful” on Sunday, while award-winning country music star Eric Church and Grammy Award-winning R&B singer-songwriter Jazmine Sullivan will be singing “The Star-Spangled Banner.”
Amanda Gorman, the 22-year-old National Youth Poet Laureate who captivated the nation at the presidential inauguration will perform a new poem she wrote in honor Los Angeles educator Trimaine Davis, Florida nurse manager Suzie Dorner, and James Martin, a Marine veteran who volunteers with the Wounded Warrior Project. These three will be honorary captains for Super Bowl LV by the NFL.
We also know that The Weeknd will be gracing the stage for the 2021 Pepsi Super Bowl LV Halftime Show, which studies have shown has an enormous impact on song downloads as well as Youtube views and subscribers. One of the exciting things about the halftime show each year is that we never know who will be a surprise guest and take the stage alongside the main performer. In recent years, we’ve seen artists like Destiny’s Child, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Missy Elliot, and Lenny Kravitz capitalize on the buzz and drum up fresh excitement in their fan base.
Billboard has made a few predictions for who The Weeknd will bring on as his guests. There are rumors swirling about everyone from Kenny G and Doja Cat; to Ariana Grande; to Daft Punk; to Kendrick Lamar; to Drake; or even Aminé.
If you’ve tuned in at all to sports radio over the past week or so, you have undoubtedly heard analysts laying out what’s at stake with Super Bowl LV. Will Tom Brady win a staggering seventh ring, pushing himself even further into the lead for greatest NFL player of all time? Or will Patrick Mahomes secure back to back Super Bowl wins, and cement himself as the next Brady? Every Super Bowl brings with it the potential for new milestones. This year, some of the most compelling and consequential achievements aren’t coming from the players on the field, however.
When the Buccaneers take the field against the Chiefs on Sunday for the Lombardi Trophy, they’ll become the first team in NFL history to have multiple female coaches on their sideline in a Super Bowl— Lori Locust, an assistant defensive line coach and Maral Javadifar, an assistant strength and conditioning coach. Sarah Thomas will also become the first female to be on a Super Bowl officiating crew.
These women aren’t just breaking any one barrier, though. They’re paving the way for a more inclusive future for football and pro sports in general.
The Bucs are also the first team to reach the Super Bowl with Black assistant coaches serving as coordinators for offense, defense, and special teams— Byron Leftwich, offense; Todd Bowles, defense; and Keith Armstrong, special teams. Perfectly timed with the celebration of Black History Month, this milestone is a wonderful example of how Black history continues to be made.
Make us a part of your team
With upwards of a hundred million viewers, the Super Bowl is one of the biggest and brightest stages in the world for performers, professionals, or people with compelling stories. And though it’s a football game, the audience it draws includes people of all interests. For event planners, that makes the big game, and all the festivities surrounding it, like one giant, global focus group, providing unprecedented insight into which speakers are about to be in high demand.
While the ‘big game’ only comes around every 365 days, AAE books these keynote speakers all year round. Whether it be superstar quarterbacks like Tom Brady or Patrick Mahomes, big-name celebrities from the always-entertaining commercials like Mila Kunis, Don Cheadle, or Nick Jonas, or performers like Eric Church and The Weeknd – All American Speakers Bureau has you covered for your next event.
Browse our comprehensive list of star athletes, coaches, and celebrities to watch at Super Bowl LV.