The American Energizer commercials, produced by DDB Chicago Advertising, originally began as a parody of TV advertisements for rival Duracell. In the Duracell ads, a set of battery-powered instrument-playing toy animals gradually slow to a halt until only the toy powered by a copper-top battery remains active. In Energizer's parody, the Energizer Bunny then enters the screen beating a huge bass drum and swinging a mallet over his head. The criticism was that Duracell compared their batteries with carbon batteries, and not similar alkaline batteries like Energizer. The creative team at DDB Chicago who conceived and designed the bunny chose All Effects special effects company to build the original Energizer Bunny, a remotely operated vehicle. All Effects operated the Energizer Bunny in most of its first commercials.
The Bunny was actually created by a special effects expert named Eric Allard. His son was swimming in a flotation device shaped like a rabbit, and his wife placed her sunglasses on the bunny to make her son laugh. Eric looked up from his paper, saw the bunny, and immediately ran into his workshop. Seven hours later he had finished his sketches for the new ideas of the Energizer company, and hence the Energizer Bunny was born.
As the series progressed, realistic-looking commercials were aired for fictional products (such as "Sitagin Hemorrhoid Remedy") only to have the Bunny march through. To date, the Energizer Bunny has appeared in more than 115 television commercials. In these commercials, a voiceover would announce one of various slogans used throughout the years; all of them would relate the stalwartness of the Energizer Bunny to the long-lasting power of their batteries. The original slogan boasted that "...[n]othing outlasts the Energizer...", but it was eventually changed after a lawsuit filed by Duracell disputing Energizer's claim.
The Energizer Bunny and his likeness have made cameos on television shows including Cheers, ABC Wide World of Sports, The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, The Late Show with David Letterman, Saturday Night Live, The Simpsons, and MADtv. He has also appeared in movies including Grumpy Old Men, Edtv, and Hot Shots! Part Deux.
The Elvis commercial is from 1999. This Energizer commercial including Elvis will return to local stations and TV channels on September 22, 2008.