Toronto’s Chelsea Ranger is at it again — rapping in a car. But this time it’s for money.
Last November the osteopathy student became a YouTube sensation singing along to Salt-N-Pepa’s “None of Your Business” in her car, unaware that her husband was filming her performance.
Now she’s rapping to Blondie’s “Rapture” behind the wheel of a 2015 Acura RDX in a television commercial to be aired on major U.S. networks.
“I still can’t wrap my head around how this happened,” says Ranger, 30. “It seems so crazy.”
What happened is that the 32-second video posted by the couple just for fun went viral on YouTube. It currently has 16.5 million hits.
Back at about three million hits, Los Angeles called. The ad agency for Acura was interested in using the rapping Ranger.
“Her knack for memorizing and belting out a tune was exactly what Acura was casting for at the time,” says Ed Beadle, senior manager of marketing at Acura. “Her fun-loving and relatable spirit fit the bill.”
It’s not until the end of the original video that she notices husband Paulo Salomao with his camera and she screams. They both laugh. A warm, fuzzy couple’s moment.
The ad agency wanted to see another audition tape as soon as possible. So on a lunch break from classes, she sat in her car singing and taping herself.
“That was very weird,” recalls Ranger.
Then an obstacle arose: it was going to take too long to get a U.S. work permit. So instead the agency came to her, using Toronto’s Radke Films and shooting at Showline Harbourside Studios.
Ranger says she was nervous when they first started shooting the ad. Then the director and her husband stood in front of the car and danced along as she sang and bobbed her head supposedly driving. “That helped me get into it, but I started laughing,” she says.
The commercial has already aired in the U.S. during college football playoff games. It will be broadcast through January on CBS, NBC and Fox during widely viewed football games.
Ranger isn’t sure if this is the beginning or the end of her acting career.
“It would be fun. Who doesn’t secretly want to be an actress? But I wouldn’t be disappointed if it didn’t happen. I like what I’m doing now.”
What she’s doing now is cramming for an osteopathy exam on the thoracic segment of the human spine.
“Life is back to normal. It all just feels like a fun dream.”