Great Guns pays tribute to legendary actor, Harry Dean Stanton, who passed last Saturday, by sharing unscreened footage of the star. Upon hearing the sad news, the production company uncovered a hitherto unscreened five-minute version of the 1996 Guess ‘Cheat’ TVC from their archives.
Starring Stanton, Juliette Lewis, Traci Lords, and Peter Horton, ‘Cheat’ won over 84 global awards, including four D&AD pencils. Stanton flexes his trademark hangdog charm in the spot, playing a private investigator who stops at nothing to trap his prey. Lewis plays his beautiful, Guess-clad decoy.
Refreshing for its time, the 90” version of ‘Cheat’ (written by current CCO of Ogilvy Memac, Paul Shearer, and his then partner Rob Jack) plays out like a sleek, branded content film and is largely credited as being one of the first pieces of ‘advertainment’. When Guess’ ECD and Founder Paul Marciano saw the first cut, he requested that all of the branded product shots be removed, claiming they spoiled the film.
Great Guns’ Owner, Laura Gregory, who was Executive Producer on the spot, remembers working with Director Andy Morahan to track down Stanton at the legendary LA music venue, The Mint. When he heard that Lewis was to the be the Guess girl in the spot, he jumped at the opportunity, saying he’d always wanted to work with the actress.
The previously unseen five-minute version released by Great Guns today, plays out like a short. The offline takes us through the full narrative of the investigation, from Stanton taking the call to Lewis bagging the suspect. Alongside this, Great Guns also uncovered a 15-second teaser film, ‘Sorry’ in which Stanton rehearses the delivery of one word, ‘sorry’, as he drives through LA with the bad news for his client (Lords).
During his six-decade-long career, Stanton collaborated with industry greats such as David Lynch, Ridley Scott, and John Carpenter. His unique talent is immortalised in films such as Cool Hand Luke, Alien, Repo Man, and Pretty in Pink.