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Where’s the Beef?

Quote for Today: Sacred cows make the tastiest hamburger. Abby Hoffman

On this day in history, we lost actress/manicurist Clara Peller. Clara lived in an around Chicago most of her life. Married at age twenty, she divorced eight years later with two children. For thirty-five years she worked as a manicurist in a Chicago beauty salon.

In the early 1980’s, there was a commercial being filmed nearby, and they needed a manicurist’s hands. Someone scrambled to a nearby shop and spotted Clara doing her Madge routine. They brought her to the set and introduced her to the director, Joe Sedelmaier and she was immediately hired. On January 10, 1984 her first Wendy’s commercial aired and she spoke the magic words “Where’s the beef?”

Where’s the Beef? Wendy’s Commercial 1984

Instantly Clara Peller became a cult star and “Where’s the Beef?” became a catch phrase all across the United States. Wendy’s sales jumped 31% world wide during this ad campaign. Peller went on to do more commercials for Wendy’s and enjoyed rock star type status during the ad campaign. She even appeared on Saturday Night Live. Her relationship with Wendy’s ended however when she did a commercial for the Campbell Soup Company for Prego Spaghetti Sauce. In this commercial, she claimed to have found the beef. The Wendy’s Corporation stated that “Clara can only find the beef in one place and that is Wendy’s.”

Taco Bell CommercialThe Wendy’s commercials were great, but in terms of the best food commercials Taco Bell’s Chihuahua and Fred the Dunkin’ Donuts baker who proclaims “Time to make the donuts” gave some pretty good competition.




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