In case you tragically lost your Internet connection for the last couple of days, Sizzler is back! At least a promotional video for Sizzler is. Posted to YouTube in 2012 and just rediscovered this week, the video above has been reposted all over and is 100 percent worth the four and a half minutes it takes to watch. Seriously, stop reading right now and just watch and bask in its beauty.
After watching it about nine times we had to find out who made the video so we did a little hunting and tracked down the man behind it at his vacation home in Minnesota. Meet Fred Ashman.
Ashman founded a company called Multi Image Productions in 1973 and ran it until 2013. They specialized not only in videos like the Sizzler one, but massive internal branding campaigns for companies like American Airlines, Mastercard and Chevrolet.
As for the almost overwhelming feeling of patriotism you get after watching that Sizzler promo—it was totally intentional. “We did all the creative—writing, shooting, all of it,” said Ashman. “Sizzler was supposed to be America’s steakhouse. It was Chevrolet, apple pie and Sizzler.”
But videos like that were not how Ashman started out. At 19 he played trumpet in a band at Disneyland, began producing some of the park’s summer shows and then went to work for Emmy-Award winning television producer Nick Vanoff.
But he left the world of traditional TV and film in Los Angeles and he is glad he did. “You know, in my career I really believe I have had more creative freedom than most of the people I know in TV and film.”
And with that freedom he’s kept himself pretty busy. Ashman has created IMAX movies for museums, written two books, shot a feature film he’s getting ready for a 250-theater release and oh yeah, he’s a pilot too. He’s had about 5000 hours in the air.
As for the Sizzler video, he’s glad that people have found it and are enjoying it, but it clearly wasn’t at the front of his mind. “I actually forgot we did it.”
At a million views and counting it probably won’t be forgotten again for a while.