NEW ORLEANS – He still attracts fans in Blues Brothers or Ghost Busters costumes. But Monday afternoon in New Orleans, Dan Aykroyd was more focused on his Crystal Head Vodka.
Aykroyd was signing bottles of the vodka at the Rouses on Tchoupitoulas Street, Uptown. He also signed every album, shirt, photo, and movie accessory that his fans brought his way.
Aykroyd’s vodka is as much a hit with connoisseurs as his movies are with fans. He’s in town to promote the vodka during Super Bowl week.
It’s not his first trip to New Orleans during the week of the big game. In fact, he and Jim Belushi performed during a previous Super Bowl in New Orleans. Aykroyd says the producers of the even required the Blues Brothers to lip sync their performances. He says he and Belushi fought it, but in the end, had no choice but to get with the program.
Aykroyd is also a big fan of New Orleans. He promotes his other business ventures in the city like the House of Blues on Decatur Street. He also hopes this year’s Super Bowl, the first in New Orleans since Hurricane Katrina, will help show the world how far the city has recovered since the storm.
“Not just tourists, but to come back and realize that there are homes now. There’s a way back for the city that perhaps is a little more clear. We just have to attract people to the area, and this will do it,” Aykroyd said while taking a break from signing bottles and whatever else showed up in front of him.
The line to meet the man who got his big break on the national stage as an early cast member of Saturday Night Live stretched through the Rouses store. People from various generations have different attachments to Aykroyd. Some even brought their young children to meet and take a photo with him that perhaps one day down the road, they’ll have their own reasons to appreciate.