We celebrated with angel food cake with blue butter-cream flowers just the shade of Billy’s famous shirt. And missed him. Even though we are really looking forward to PitchMen Season 2 and can’t wait to see Sully, Billy Mays III and Arwen, it’s bitter-sweet that Billy had just hit it big when he died. All those pitches and commercials led up to a very successful show on the Discovery Channel and appearances with Jay Leno and Conan O’Brien. He had just signed a deal with Taco Bell to film commercials for the chain. I can’t help but wonder what other successes would have been his – he was a big believer in the American Dream, and not even the sky was his limit.
Season 2 of television reality show Pitchmen is slated to debut this August on Discovery Channel. Get ready for a new season of idiosyncratic inventors and their innovative products, marketed to the masses with the help of Anthony “Sully” Sullivan, Billy Mays III, Arwen Saxon and rest of the amazing crew at Sullivan Productions. Join the Sullivan Productions/PitchMen on Facebook today to get the latest PitchMen news and exclusive behind-the-scenes photos.
Always pleased to see a new product from Pitchmen pitchman Anthony Sullivan. With the upcoming 4th of July weekend, your Savvy Shopper is wondering how many ARBBIs (Alcohol-Related Barbeque Burn Injuries) could be prevented if all grillmasters who are chillin’ and grillin’ would slip on the Grill Glove before flipping those steaks, burgers or ribs with their bare hands.
Kudos to Brandon Veski for creating this awesome Photoshop mashup of Billy Mays and Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band. Although most of the transplanted heads are Billy Mays, Jr., we spy other Pitchmen cast members, including Anthony Sullivan. The Fab Four are reimagined as Billy Mays III and Hindu Goddess Lakshmi now sports the lovely face of Arwen Saxon (@ArwenAnaNg). Billy Mays, Sr. even makes a few appearances. Who else can you find?
Click the image to view the hi-res version.
Aaron Shedlock was hired by Sullivan Productions to search through their vast library of infomercials and put together this demo reel featuring some of the best short and long-form infomercials produced by Anthony Sullivan and his talented crew, many featuring the late, great Billy Mays. Watching this gets us super excited for the premiere of the new season of Discovery Channel’s Pitchmen.
TBO.com reports on a new informercial filmed yesterday for Mighty Thirsty, the newest product from Mighty Brands. Anthony Sullivan inherited the role of Mighty spokesperson from the late Billy Mays. In this new spot, Sully is covered with Mighty Thirsty sponges, hooked to a parasail, then towed by a boat and dunked into the Gulf of Mexico to determine how absorbent the Mighty Thirsty sponges really are. We’re looking forward to seeing the footage, especially the behind the scenes action sure to show up in the new season of Pitchmen.
On June 29, 2009, Billy Mays died suddenly from cardiac arrest. Six months after his passing, Billy’s pitchman career is finally nearing its inevitable end. If you surf late night TV or dedicated infomercial channels, you might see him alongside his Pitchmen partner Anthony “Sully” Sullivan as they cut up everything in sight with the Dual Saw. But his short-form spots are running less and less. Some products that Billy used to pitch, like the Jupiter Jack, are now pitched by Sully in re-shot and re-edited spots.
The last infomercial shot by Billy Mays was for Mighty Tape, a flexible non-adhesive tape that seals leaks. He completed shooting this spot the day before he died. The product has now been renamed Mighty Fixit, with Sully again replacing Billy as pitchman. This new lower-budget spot omits the dramatic underwater scene where Billy repairs a scuba diver’s hose with Mighty Tape. I’ve always wondered if underwater filming somehow contributed to Billy’s death. Is it possible an air bubble got into his bloodstream and stopped his heart? I’m not a doctor, but just sayin’. It’s my theory and I’m sticking to it.
Nothing wrong with Sully taking over from his old friend and partner. That’s business, and Mr. Sullivan is very good at what he does both in front of and behind the camera. Just noting with sadness the end of an era. Direct response TV will never be the same without the booming voice, blue shirt, khaki slacks and jet-black beard of Billy Mays, Jr. While some advertisements remain in the public consciousness for decades, most are forgotten and don’t outlive their usefulness as tools to generate sales. Future generations aren’t likely to know or appreciate the greatest pitchman who ever pitched a product.