How That Huge ‘Unfrosted’ Cameo Came About

[Editor’s note: The following interview contains spoilers for “Unfrosted.”]

The Pop-Tarts were heated up and soon to pop — if Kellogg’s only had a name for its new toaster treat. For that, Jerry Seinfeld went to the best 1960s ad men he, or anyone, could find: Don Draper (Jon Hamm) and Roger Sterling (John Slattery) of Sterling Cooper Draper Pryce — and of AMC’s “Mad Men.”

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Who would have thought that Netflix’s “Unfrosted” — a Pop-Tarts faux origin story — would be what got those two back in their single-vented suits? A fantastical (and fantastic) cinematic universe was created, almost by accident. Here’s the not-fake origin story of the film-stealing scene.

“We would take breaks when we were writing this movie and watch ‘Mad Men’ scenes,” the film’s cowriter Spike Feresten told IndieWire. “Jerry had just rewatched the entire [series] again and said, ‘You’ve gotta see this scene.’ And it would play in our meetings like a comedy. We would just be laughing at how mean Jon Hamm would be to these clients.”

That scene, by the way, can be found lower in this story.

Feresten said Matthew Weiner’s world (and his words) ultimately “really informed, I think, Jerry as a director.”

Well, that’s good, because this is Seinfeld’s first time directing a feature film, one he also co-wrote, produced, and stars in. Feresten pointed out how the “Unfrosted” set design and its color choices reflected Weiner’s “Mad Men” visuals. It makes sense — both are set in the 1960s.

“It really feels like ‘Mad Men’ was a much bigger part of this film than we really thought,” Feresten said. “But it really started with those breaks where we were just laughing watching YouTube scenes.”

The laughs led to a light bulb. “Then [Seinfeld] said: ‘You know, they were around in 1963,” Feresten continued. “There is a world where [Kellogg’s] would have called these guys…”

So in Seinfeld’s world, Kellogg (Jim Gaffigan) did call those guys. (In real life, it was Jerry.) “What was really funny is how seamlessly they fit into this wacky world that we had created,” Seinfeld recalled Gaffigan saying. “It doesn’t bump you at all because they’re acting in this crazy way too. They’re so hostile to their clients.”

In “Unfrosted,” Seinfeld’s product-development character Bob Cabana is bummed by the Mad Men’s rudeness. (Also, their ideas in this version are terrible.) “Why are they so mean?,” Cabana asks Gaffigan’s Edsel Kellogg III, the head of Kellogg’s. “It’s just advertising.”

That is straight from the observation that started it all, a line Seinfeld said to Feresten during the film’s writing: “I don’t understand why these characters are so mean — they’re just writing commercials.”

And Pop-Tarts are just a breakfast pastry.

Check out the clip below.

“Unfrosted” is currently streaming on Netflix.

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