Many Philadelphia Sports Club members were left doing a double-take recently after realizing who “the new guy” was handing out towels at the front desk.
It was a brief stint — one morning shift — but there was comic A-lister Kevin Hart greeting and checking in PSC gymgoers, all part of a new Mountain Dew commercial shot in the city and now seen nationwide.
“Here’s a little towel from a little man,” Hart tells a customer in the commercial, one of three the soda giant shot for its new “Dew Time Off” (D.T.O.) campaign, which it says aims to “empower people to do more of what they love.”
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Perhaps most surprised by Hart’s fill-in role was the person Hart replaced, Daniel Jackson, an avid skateboarder who had no idea he was about to receive D.T.O.
“A woman came into the gym explaining how she had seen this comedian standing on the street,” Jackson said. “Then another woman came inside describing the same man. Then Kevin Hart walks through the front door pointing at me and shouting, ‘Dan the man!’ At this moment, I’m like, ‘Am I on a prank show?’”
Jackson hadn’t been punk’d, but instead endorsed by his PSC business manager Edward Gonzalez, who was approached by Mountain Dew to nominate an employee for the spot.
“Dan was the first person I thought of,” he said. “Like clockwork, I’d see him riding into the gym on his longboard and parking it behind the front desk till the end of his shift.”
Kevin Hart works for Philadelphia Sports Club
While on D.T.O., Jackson was off skateboarding through Philly alongside a camera crew.
Meanwhile, “Ride Along” star Hart was at the gym offering towels to members (“You don’t sweat? Good for you,” he snaps at one member in the commercial), and at another time was busy wiping down equipment (“One of y’all gonna leave here with pink eye,” he jokes).
The whole event may have lasted a shift, but Jackson is still living the moment on a daily basis.
“I loved that Kevin was telling everyone he was ‘here for Daniel’ and ‘filling in for Daniel,’ which made me feel awesome,” Jackson said.