We love a reboot, even if that comes in the form of a Super Bowl commercial. Alicia Silverstone is the latest celebrity to capitalize on the ’90s nostalgia trend by returning to her iconic Clueless character in a new spot for shopping platform Rakuten.
Called “Not So Clueless,” the 30-second ad will air during the first quarter of the big game on Sunday, February 12 and features Silverstone reprising her role as Cher Horowitz. Joining her in yet another classroom debate scene—this time about Rakuten’s cash back rewards—is costar Elisa Donovan, who played frenemy Amber in the film. Cher is also seen picking out clothes from her technologically-advanced closet (now mobile friendly), shopping on Rodeo Drive (for eye cream—not that she needs it), and “parked” in front of her father’s mansion (she drives an electric Jeep now, apparently). Christian Siriano even makes a cameo as one of Cher’s classmates, and the designer re-imagined Cher’s yellow-plaid suit for the ad.
Watch it all here:
Ahead of Sunday’s big game, we chatted with Silverstone about channeling Cher again. Read on.
So tell me a little bit about how this came together. When you first learned about this opportunity, what was going through your mind?
Alicia Silverstone: I thought it would be really creative and fun and exciting and scary and all of that. And really, it was the reaction from all of my team members. They were so excited about the possibilities. I think that persuaded me as well. Any nerves I had about it were outweighed by how excited everybody else was.
I know people really enjoy this character, and that comes up for me all the time. I think many people would agree that Cher is one of film history’s most iconic shoppers, so when Rakuten approached me, I thought it was a smart idea. It’s so clever and couldn’t be more perfect, because I think Rakuten would really appeal to Cher—the idea that she gets cash back for doing her favorite activity. Holy moly.
What excited you the most about doing this?
I think it was conquering that part of me that didn’t know if I could. That’s the scary part—this thing had a magic of its own that people love and have loved ever since it came out. There almost isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t hear some comment about it. So it became this thing that was untouchable to me, like, “God, I would never do that again.” The idea of doing it was scary because, what if I messed it all up? What if it sucked? What if everybody was like, “Oh, please, let’s just remember it how it was. That’s a lot better.” Hopefully that’s not the case. When I did it, it felt really, really fun. So I’m so happy I did it. I’m so happy I got to have that experience. I loved being Cher for those days, and I kind of didn’t want it to be over. I wanted it to keep going.
Was there anything you did to ensure it kept that integrity? Any non-negotiables or things that you definitely wanted to include?
I mean, working with Rakuten was a dream, and they’ve been really helpful. From the get-go they knew that it had to be a great director so they provided a great director. They also had such high standards for what they wanted. Luckily, we all had the same idea in mind, and we all wanted it to be great, right? They’ve really put a lot of energy and effort into it, in some ways, way more than I even expected. They put energy into making it as good as it possibly could, so I think we all worked together really well. It was quite easy in most ways.
Was there anything that surprised you about channeling Cher again after all these years?
She’s so fun to play. I don’t know how to explain this, but she’s a strange one because I don’t really know [where she comes from in me]. That’s why I was nervous. How do I be her? What is that? It’s something I just have to dive into the cold water of the pool and just go for and be as silly and wild as I can and play with the voice. I didn’t prepare. My preparation was, “Oh my goodness, what am I going to do? This is happening for real. This is actually happening.”
I just watched the movie, saw the essence of who she was, and then went back to the original. When I first said yes to do the film, all those years ago, when I read the script, I remember thinking, “Oh, she’s so materialistic, and she’s so annoying.” But there was also her heart—her heart was what pulled it all together for me and makes her unique. I remember thinking, “God, I’m not funny” at the time. My agent at the time, or maybe she was my manager, but she said, “You’re the funniest person I know because you take everything so seriously.”
I thought, “Okay, I’m not sure if that’s a compliment.” But I took that with me. And I think that’s what I bring to Cher, the seriousness of everything. Even when she’s making her speeches about, well, in this case, getting cash back and how important that is… I don’t know how to explain her, but she’s casual and passionate all at the same time. She’s confident and cocky and completely doesn’t know what she’s talking about sometimes too, all at the same time. And that is really fun.
That essence is why she’s lasted all these years as an iconic character. You said you re-watched the movie before doing this. When was the last time you’d seen it?
I remember seeing it with my son when he was five, so about six years ago. We saw it at the Hollywood Cemetery with 4,000 other people, and that was really exciting. I brought [costume designer] Mona May with me. I was presenting the movie to the audience. I think my son was too young to see the movie, but I didn’t know that there would ever be an opportunity for him to see mommy up on a screen that big in front of 4,000 people. It seemed like an opportunity for an important moment or something. So I did that, and we all watched it together. And Mona, every time a costume would come out, I would just smack her like, “Can you believe it?” They were so… they were characters of their own. Each costume was its own character. She’s so brilliant.
It’s such a delight to see you in Cher’s iconic yellow plaid suit again. How did it feel putting that on?
It was so fun. That particular outfit, Christian Siriano updated and added his own spicy twist to it. I always trust him so much with my body and I love him. So that was just fun. We really tried to honor Mona May’s brilliance with each costume. They’re really just copies of what she did, so it’s not like they reinvented anything. They just completely copied exactly what she did, but updated it with new materials and new lines. They did such a nice job.
And we get a fun cameo from Christian. Could you also talk about reuniting with Elisa Donovan, who played Amber in the film?
It was so nice to be there with her and see her. We both just kept looking at each other like, “What is happening? Is this really happening? Are we doing this?” Because we both have children—I think her kid is around the same age—it’s just a neat thing that here we are having this moment all over again. It’s bizarre and exciting, and we’re sharing it together. It’s lovely.
I read that you’re also reuniting at ’90s Con this year, is that correct?
I think so. I don’t know who else is going yet—you might know more than I do. I just know that I was going to go. I’m here in Amsterdam shooting a film, so I’m a little bit…my focus has been on that. When I get home, my focus will go to where I’m supposed to go next. So I don’t know who is coming, but that’s so exciting if Elisa is coming. We did one Paul Rudd, Donald Faison, and Breckin Meyer and I all did one together in Chicago like three years ago. It was so much fun to be with the three boys and me. That was a blast.
Last question: When you rewatched the movie ahead of doing this project, what feelings did it bring up for you?
I don’t remember. I just know I was focused at that time on, how do I do this? Who is she? What’s going on? I was just remembering her earnestness and commitment and confidence and silliness and passion. I don’t remember the feelings I had about…maybe just that I was nervous a little bit at that time.
The post Watch Alicia Silverstone Bring Back Her Iconic ‘Clueless’ Role for a Rakuten Super Bowl Ad appeared first on Glamour.