TV

The Inspiring Life Of Max Page, The Kid Who Played Darth Vader In That Volkswagen Commercial

On February 6th, 2011 — the week before the Super Bowl — a commercial for the 2012 Volkswagen Passat premiered on YouTube. The 60-second spot featured a little boy in a Darth Vader costume attempting to move various items around his house using the power of The Force. Thanks to the remote ignition key his father has, the kid is finally able to “start” the car using the power of his mind.

The commercial was adorable, and hugely popular. By the next morning, the ad had been seen over 1 million times, and several more millions of times before it officially even debuted on the Super Bowl the following weekend. Since February 2011, “The Force” has been seen over 60 million times on YouTube, and is the most viral ad of all time.

But what happened to the kid behind the mask?

His name is Max Page, and he’s just about the most terrific kid on the planet. I was reminded of him over the summer when I spotted a familiar face in an early season two episode of The Bridge.

That’s him. Potente’s character implicitly threatened his life unless his older brother helped her out of a bind. Page was also in an episode of Extant over the summer, and in addition to a recurring role on The Young and the Restless, Page was also the kid on the remake of Prime Suspect with Maria Bello.

What’s most remarkable about this is that, as an infant, Max had open heart surgery to deal with a condition called Tetralogy of Fallot, which involves anatomical abnormalities of the heart. By the time he was seven years old — and after the Super Bowl commercial — he had undergone his eighth surgery to deal with the condition. During that surgery, he received a new pulmonary valve, and should be good to go for several more years.

The acting career, the reporting career (for Hasbro), and the multiple surgeries (and presumably, schooling) hasn’t kept Max Page from advocating on behalf of other sick children. In 2013, in fact, he raised over $75,000 for Children’s Hospitals, and early this year — as an ambassador for Speak Now For Kids, an advocacy group for Children’s Hospitals — he spent time meeting with several Congressmen on Capitol Hill to lobby on behalf sick kids.

— Max Page (@maxpagelildarth) June 25, 2014

That said, he is just a nine-year-old kid, so he does take time off every once in a while to do what other kids his age do, like watch Guardians of the Galaxy.

Not a bad life, and the kid deserves every second of it.

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