Actor, Erik Nicolaisen, who starred in the Volkswagen (VW) “Get Happy” commercial, is in the island at the invitation of the Jamaica Tourist Board (JTB) to participate in promotional activities for destination Jamaica.
Minister of Tourism and Entertainment, Hon. Dr. Wykeham McNeill, and Director of Tourism, John Lynch, were on hand to greet Mr. Nicolaisen on his arrival on Monday, February 18, at the Sangster International Airport in Montego Bay. The actor’s Jamaican brother-in law, Robert Murphy, also made the trip.
In the popular commercial, aired during the American Super Bowl earlier this month, Mr. Nicolaisen plays a happy office worker, who speaks with a Jamaican accent. It also features a rendition of The Partridge Family’s theme song, ‘Get Happy’ sung by reggae icon, Jimmy Cliff.
In commending the actor, Minister NcNeill said the commercial generated a lot of recognition for the country.
He said over the next few days, Mr. Nicolaisen will be travelling across the island, visiting attractions and filming videos to be used in some of the JTB’s promotional activities.
“I think that the association with Jamaica is going to be a good one and that it can go a long way in promoting Jamaica, both here and abroad. You are a very recognisable face here in Jamaica, so your visit should be a very interesting one,” Dr. McNeill said.
In his reply, Mr. Nicolaisen said he is happy and honoured to have participated in the VW commercial and also for the opportunity provided to further promote a country he admires.
“What a lovely opportunity to be able to represent a culture that I appreciate and I have come to understand as a fan of Reggae music and a student of Jamaica since I was a little kid. What an opportunity; and I am just trying to embrace it and just enjoy myself in all of this,” Mr. Nicolaisen stated.
“I want to thank the Jamaica Tourist Board for bringing me here. If I can come down and act to help Brand Jamaica, what a joy … that’s why I am here,” he added.
The Tourism Director, in welcoming Mr. Nicolaisen, said he has been a “good ambassador” for Jamaica.