ACN on Celebrity Apprentice

On tonight’s episode of “The Celebrity Apprentice”, where Dionne Warwick was fired and then called NeNe Leakes a coward, the teams had to create commericials for the ACN video phone.
But, this wasn’t the first time that there has been an ACN challenge on The Celebrity Apprentice.
The March 22, 2009 Celebrity Apprentice Challenge was an ACN one. Last year – the celebrities had to help launch the ACN video phone, instead of just making a commercial for it like they had to do on tonight’s episode.
ACN has the personal endorsement of Donald Trump. Maybe we’ll see another ACN challenge on a later Celebrity Apprentice.

ACN on Celebrity Apprentice
Celebrity Apprentice.

John Rich had a legitimate concern on tonight’s episode of “Celebrity Apprentice.” The teams were tasked with creating a 30-second commercial for ACN’s new video phone, with ACN execs emphasizing that playing to the public’s emotion was pivotal for the challenge. Team Backbone (the men’s team) elected to weave a gay theme into their creative commercial, which raised a red flag for Rich due to the team’s decision to be risky rather than safe.
“I am a little concerned ACN might think it’s funny but [that they] can’t use it as a universal pitch for the company” – Rich said, thinking like a well-rounded businessman. “If I was project manager, I would have gone for a more traditional approach, but [project manager] Lil Jon is a gambler.”
Even as the commercial was being filmed, with Jose Canseco dressing in drag and Gary Busey acting as a grandfather, Rich continued to voice his fear that the team went overboard and didn’t adhere to the company’s emotional element, which makes sense, because the team was constructing a commercial for a major corporation. Rich continued: “It’s such a gamble of a move and I think this company will think we went too far over the edge and that it’s not a good pitch for their product.”
When they went before Donald Trump, Lil Jon and the team acknowledged that they were taking a chance, especially since the company’s tagline is to communicate without boundaries.
Turns out Rich’s fears, while understandable, did not hinder the men from winning yet another challenge. The gamble paid off. We’ll see John Rich again next week on “Celebrity Apprentice.”

Lil Jon was the project manager for Backbone and Nene Leaks the PM for the women’s team A.S.A.P. Each team met with the CEO of ACN. It was made clear that the commercial should be about family and connection. Nene was great at delegating the tasks and tasked Marlee Matlin to star in the commerical. The women chose to connect a daughter who had just arrived in Paris to phone home to her parents. Dionne played host family for a young girl. Marlee signed a heartfelt hello to her daughter on video phone – simple, emotional, to the point and well executed.
Backbone with Lil Jon at the helm went for racy, comedic and potentially viral video impact. It was hush-hush on their plans when Ivanka came to check. Jose Canseco along with an actor played a gay, engaged couple. Richard Hatch, speaking as a gay man, gave pointers to the commercial. But it was Lil Jon’s creativity and all chips on black in Vegas, as he put it. His team went for broke and racy. It paid off with a close win of 53% to 47% for ASAP. I think Nene saw it coming because she started crying for no reason.
But after the win for Backbone was announced the nails came out on the chalkboard room. And Dionne was going down for two reasons – she went back to her hotel room early cause she felt like it and was never easy to work with. Dionne the respected diva goaded Donald Trump “fire me!” He said that no one gets away with that so he complied and Dionne was sent home.

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