As first reported by The New York Times, Jeff Bridges, the voice of Hyundai Motor America's commercials since 2007, will not be heard during the automaker's eight television spots tonight. Since Mr. Bridges is up for the Best Actor award for his performance in the film Crazy Heart, Hyundai would be violating Academy advertising guidelines if he (or his voice) appeared in a commercial during the awards.
But what first seemed like a setback, ultimately led to a brilliant tactical move. With just a few weeks to spare, Hyundai came up with a new plan and recruited seven well-known actors to pinch hit for Mr. Bridges. Tonight the car company will still air its eight commercials -- one in the pre-show and seven during the awards -- but instead of the voice of Jeffery Lebowski, you'll hear Kim Basinger, Richard Dreyfuss, David Duchovny, Catherine Keener, Michael Madsen, Mandy Patinkin, Martin Sheen talking about safety, performance, value and such.
And because we care about these things more than most, we're very happy to show you a preview. Watch below.