The commercial that locals have been waiting for is finally on the small screen. It’s a new Lincoln Navigator advertisement, starring actor Matthew McConaughey and a San Juan Islands barge named the M/V Pintail.
“We had a blast working on that job,” said Kevin Martin, owner of the Pintail Marine company. “Seeing it on TV was almost as fun as doing the job.”
Martin said the commercial was filmed last September after the production company approached him about the project.
The Pintail hauls items that cannot be moved on the Washington State Ferries, like propane, but celebrities typically aren’t part of the load.
“[It’s] not something we haul every day,” said Martin. “Usually our 2-year-old son is the biggest star onboard.”
In the commercial, McConaughey’s SUV is transported by the Pintail, but it can be hard to recognize; the vessel was painted a darker shade and the name was temporarily changed to Cyrus.
“Some people in the production liked the name Pintail better, but Cyrus has been used in other Lincoln commercials and they like to keep cohesion,” said Martin.
The Pintail also helped with the production of “Free Willy 2,” in the 90s, he said, but that was before he and his wife, Kendra, took over the company in 2016.
Martin said about 200 people and 10 boats helped in the commercial’s production, but the Pintail was the only vessel filmed.
A boat from Maya’s Legacy Whale Watching was used to transport the cast to and from the film set, including McConaughey himself. Spencer Domico, one of the owners of the company, admitted the crew was a little nervous to pick up the A-lister, but that soon disappeared.
“After he got out of the limo and we introduced ourselves, we realized he was just like you might expect,” said Domico. “We found him [to be] funny, cordial, witty and as down to earth as any of us.”
McConaughey’s mom accompanied him, said Domico, and she had a similar sense of humor.
“We had a lot of fun with them,” he added.
Watch the commercial below.