So, David Spade has finally sent his publicist home, and emerged from his hot tub to speak out personally about the Direct TV ad featuring his dead friend Chris Farley. From People:

When he agreed to do a DirecTV commercial featuring a scene from Tommy Boy with the late Chris Farley, actor David Spade never dreamed anybody would be offended.

“Slight shock,” Spade told PEOPLE on Wednesday night of the fallout from the ad, which some commentators saw as tasteless. “These commercials are cool. They’re well done. They’re clever. And that they would include Tommy Boy in that company, I thought was very flattering.”

Spade says featuring Tommy Boy in a commercial series that also has scenes from Back to the Future and Aliens “is so cool” since “we made this thing and people still talk about it.”

“Oh, my God if [Farley] was here, I guarantee he’d be stoked that this little movie is included,” says Spade. (Farley died in 1997 of heart failure linked to an overdose.) “The movie is important to me, and I would hate to offend [anyone] because that’s one of my favorite things I’ve ever done. So I would apologize to someone who took it that way.”

OK, well, it would be unfair to complain about David Spade hiding behind his publicist when he should be making his own statement and then to simply mock the statement that he does give. So, we should all be gracious and accept David Spade’s apology, and thank him for taking some time out of his busy hot tub schedule to respond to this IMPORTANT controversy. (That is the main thing about this, is how important it is.) But, just for the record, these ads are NOT cool! Come on, David Spade. And it is not flattering to have your movie be…part of…Direct TV’s ads? Huh?

You think that this is cool, David Spade?

When David Spade saw that he got out his Sidekick II and he called Chris Kattan and was like “I just saw the coolest thing.”

You think that this is cool, David Spade?

“Hey, Rob Schneider, it’s David Spade. Check your email, I just sent you the coolest thing.”

I just feel like we need to be really clear here, as human beings, in recognizing that there is nothing “flattering” about your work being manipulated and repurposed in order to sell people something they don’t need. And even if it was flattering, which it absolutely is not, one thing that separates these other ads from the David Spade ad is that the other ads feature ZERO DEAD PEOPLE.

And if Chris Farley was here, David Spade, he might be stoked (really, 2009, stoked?) to have Tommy Boy included in a cheesy advertising campaign for a cable company (super-stokes), but I bet that he would really be stoked to NOT BE DEAD. Just saying.

Comments (47)
  1. And why would Farley be “stoked” that his little movie is held up as an example of some played-out thing no one wants to see ever again?

    • Farley would be stoked that someone was talking about one of his movies and not the job he’s doing on whatever terrible game or reality show he’s been reduced to hosting.

  2. not to be a david spade apologist or anything, but i am confused about one thing. wouldnt chris farley’s estate have to sign off on the use of his likeness? how is it all david spade’s fault?

  3. From the little I know about Chris Farley, I’m not so sure that he would be stoked to not be dead. Oh god. I just depressed myself. Good morning, everyone!

  4. I can see David’s point. Why should he be taken away from his life of impregnating Playboy Playmates and luxury in order to act like he feels bad about this, when it’s totally fine to promote and go see the Michael Jackson “This Is It” movie which is horrible and creepy not to mention a money grab and lame created solely to take advantage of people who can’t let go of the gloved one. Where’s the outrage for using the CGI John Lennon in the Beatles Video. Farley is not a sacred cow.

  5. You know, there’s a Levi’s ad out right now that uses a recording of Walt Whitman reciting a poem. And Walt Whitman is DEAD. And tons of ads have used Louis Armstrong’s “What A Wonderful World.” Louis Armstrong is DEAD. And hey, the aliens in Aliens were made by Stan Winston. Stan Winston is DEAD. He died last year! The memory of his death is still fresh!

    /sigh. Can’t we all mock David Spade for something worthwhile, like that ridiculous facial hair, instead of getting upset when yet another dead person’s work is used in a commercial? It happens ALL THE TIME. I think using an already commercialized, mainstream slapstick comedy to sell things is hardly the most offensive example of it. That facial hair, however, is definitely the most offensive example of facial hair.

    • actually, i think most ads that use “what a wonderful world” are pretty offensive.

      • but the Levis ads are kind of beautiful. I actually stop and watch them when they are on.

        • Poetry plus models equals good commercial. It’s kind of hypnotizing, really; I love it but am ashamed for doing so.

        • Revolutions only work when everyone is shirtless.. and they feature 3 second shots of guys looking about a foot behind the camera crew with a look on their face like “screw you, dad, I’m part of a resolutions!”

        • They are beautiful… until you realize that Levi’s aren’t even made in America.

      • Seeing Etta James’ “At Last” used to advertise cat food made me want to barf. Then when all my college friends started getting married and dancing with their wives to that song it made me want to buy cat food.

    • I’m not all that offended by the DirectTV ads. Mostly because I think the concept as an advertisement is more interesting than a lot of other ads, and because it succeeds in its purpose in making people talk about its product. And yeah, Chris Farley isn’t shilling the product, David Spade is. Chris Farley is just being Chris Farley. And I miss that guy! But mostly I’m not offended because I don’t care that it’s selling me something because I’m not buying what it’s selling.

      I’m MORE offended by the Whitman/Levi’s ad because the poem is moving, the narration and the imagery are moving, and it actually succeeds in making me feel like, “Yes! We youths! We pioneers! Let us go forth!” And then it’s fucking selling me jeans! I’m ready for battle and westward expansion, and it’s telling me a Whitman poem is just about buying shit and fucking. God dammit!

      • oh, everything is about buying shit and fucking.

        • I’m buying shit and fucking right now!

          BTDubs, If you look up the Levi’s commercial on the youtubes, there is a rather intelligent dialogue happening about the appropriateness of using the imagery of an openly gay American icon in an advertisement aimed towards youths. I think 101Florida101 had the most intriguing and thoughtful point that we should all pause and consider when he declared, “You’re probably a? fag yourself huh? LOL! Being a fagget is wrong, FAGGET ”

  6. i thought people were offended that Farley is presented as an old relic that only DirecTV can save you from having to watch. which is fair enough, i suppose, but it seems odd that his friend, David Spade, would encourage one to avoid watching a Chris Farley movie in such an eyerolling manner. or something

  7. Where were the nay-sayers when sigourney weaver signed on? the queen alien didn’t just OD, she got sucked into deep space. 23 years later, no one considers this ad as offensive?

  8. Damn, Delahaye. Very tough…but fair. It makes the part of me that wishes for fame want to wish all the harder in hopes that I might someday be important enough for you to evaluate my ethics.

    Does anybody else feel this way? Anybody out there harboring a weird, strong desire to write letters to Gabe and have him tear you to shreds?

  9. I actually think a few of them are just plain clever and I can only hope their popularity spawns man, many sequels. Wayne’s World 3…I’ll have some of that, I guess.

  10. Where’s the hate on Lincoln Financial Group? Washington Mutual? Little Caesars?

  11. Hidden due to low comment rating. Click here to see

    • Yeah! Chris Farley should come back from the dead just to apologize for being dead! How dare he disappoint us fans by having a serious substance abuse issue that ultimately killed him! What an asshole.

  12. Let’s be honest here, this is mostly because you hated David Spade to begin with. The commercials are well done and actually a pretty neat idea. The truth is that Chris Farley probably wouldn’t be offended, he would be totally stoked to be alive though…so stoked he’d go get a bunch of cocaine. But to be fair if PEOPLE is getting the Spade scoop Gabe can’t be the only one offended, I can’t wait for the official White House statement.

  13. I didn’t even realize there was an Aliens version. That almost makes me more sad than the Chris Farley one. Ripley was my hero as a kid! She’s got better things to do than shirk for DirecTV. Oof, my heart, it hurts…

  14. He apologizes to someone? Ok everybody, David Spade apologizes to the ONE PERSON who was offended by these totally awesome ads. We can all go home now, it’s cool.

  15. Again, I’d say Gabe is being way too harsh here. Are these commercials brilliant? no, not really. But they have a concept of playing off of iconic scenes from iconic movies, and that’s all this is. A funny scene from a funny movie, and again, it’s not Chris Farley selling the product, it’s David Spade removing himself from the scene to sell direct-tv. And if I were him, I too would be stoked to have my movie included amongst these other box office hits, which Tommy boy was obviously not. Now if they had a CGI Farley crawling out of the grave, thriller style, selling directv while searching for brains, that would be disrespectful. and awesome.

  16. From “David Spade’s Publicist…” post

    “Second of all, it is not up to David Spade, and it is not even up to the Farley family, to determine what is or is not appropriate use of his image/memory.”

    From “Let’s All Dress Up Like Billy Mays” post

    “But who are we to judge how Billy Mays III reacts to the loss of his father? Who are we to say what is or is not appropriate or tasteful?”

    Which is it, Gabe?

  17. Well last year Coach and the dead little girl from Poltergeist were hawking Direct TV and nobody got upset . . .

    . . . oh wait, yea they did. David Spade should spend less time in his hot tub and more time googling these things.

  18. David Spade is circling dangerously close to a “You Can Make It Up.”

  19. Question, and sorry if it’s been brought up – wasn’t there a Direct TV ad with the little girl from Poltergeist? The “They’re hee-eeer” girl? Isn’t she dead too?

  20. I do like the “Fat Guy in a Little Coat” remix they play behind the narrator at the end of the commercial.

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