The “Lost” Schaefer Beer Commercial – 1965
In 1965, Schaefer Beer contracted with Andy Varipapa and his good friend, billiard champion Willie Mosconi, to each produce Schaefer Beer commercials that featured their famous trick shots. Their commercials were shown separately on the Schafer Award Theatre movie presentation, usually on Saturday nights in the New York City area. As they were performing either on the lanes or the billiard table the famous Schaefer jingle would be playing in the background.
Despite all the old commercials that have been uploaded to YouTube, including many Schaefer commercials, this one still seems to be lost. I remember Andy’s well, having watched it as a child and it was one of his best performances. I have tried to contact Schaefer, but they were sold to Stroh Brewery in 1981 and then subsequently Stroh Brewery was sold to Pabst Brewing Company in 1999, so connecting with people in the know has been difficult.
But I will keep trying as I would really like to add this to the collection. In the meantime, here are some old “bowling and beer” ads that I did find on the web.
Schaefer Award Theatre was a recurring television showcase of major first-run motion pictures aired between 1959 and 1968, and revived briefly in 1970. In New York City, the program ran primarily on WCBS-TV (Channel 2), except for two occasions in 1970 when it was shown on WNBC-TV (Channel 4). This special series was sponsored by Schaefer Beer, and each film run under this banner was shown with only four commercial interruptions. On WCBS-TV, this show was aired in place of their usual late-night umbrella, The Late Show.
Schaefer Award Theatre was also shown in some other major cities in the United States, such as on WCAU-TV (Channel 10) in Philadelphia, WBZ-TV (Channel 4) in Boston, KYW-TV (Channel 3, now WKYC) in Cleveland, and, in later years, WJRT-TV (Channel 12) in Flint, Michigan.
To view Andy’s 2015 Wheaties Profile, click here.