A year after being smothered in soup, shaving cream and stage love by an actress playing his mother in a commercial for Campbell's Chunky Soup, Eagles quarterback Donovan McNabb is back in the "Mama's Boys" ad campaign, this time alongside his real mother, Wilma McNabb. She's not the only football mama turned thespian: The mothers of Jerome Bettis, Michael Strahan and Brian Urlacher will make their debuts in this year's spots, which were to begin airing this week. Why did ad agency Young & Rubicam switch from actresses to real mothers six years into the campaign? Initially the agency thought it needed pros for the physical comedy, but with the slapstick scaled back this year—Wilma and Donovan are seen bringing Chunky Soup to a construction site—there was no reason not to keep it real.
The change is fine with Wilma, who went to last year's shoot in Los Angeles and thought, "I could do that." On the set of this year's commercial Donovan kept the mood light by referring to his mother as "the rookie." As for her son's screen presence, Wilma says it's mmm-mmm good: "He has kissable lips and a perfect set of ears."