We all see many people playing different characters on the city sidewalk, and we seldom pay any attention to them. Unless, of course, they are doing something unique or different. But if the character has been portrayed meagerly and there is nothing different in how they are showcasing the talent aspect of it, there isn’t much charm left to enjoy. Hence, you see many people playing Elvis, Michael Jackson, Charlie Chaplin, and more, but they seldom attract us.
Tommy Holl seemed to have grasped this concept quite clearly as he wanted to play a character while doing something different and unique about it. The main business aspect of it all? Tommy Holl has an incredible personality, and that was his pain selling point. He wanted to use his fun-loving, admirable personality and put it to some good use. And that is how the concept character The Real Elf was born.
The idea first came to him when he dressed as an elf for one of his office’s Christmas parties, and his colleagues told him that he looked like The Elf on a Shelf. That’s when he decided that why not take this forward, expand it into a proper, real-life business and make something worthwhile about it. So he finally came to a conclusion to make this elf the main character, which he would play himself and make appearances at different events.
Given his amicable personality, how he dressed the elf, and the whole Christmas-y aesthetic of it was well-liked by people. He started gaining traction, and soon enough, he was visiting corporate events, birthday parties, and bar mitzvahs, and his demand during the Christmas season was insane. Safe to say that whatever idea Tommy had initially planned, things were working better than that and doing wonders for his popularity.
Therefore, the whole thing was nicely coming together, and Tommy was doing well for himself before the unfortunate happened – he contracted sarcoma, a rare type of cancer that starts with tumors in fingers and toes. The only available treatment for it was amputation, and naturally, Tommy was against it. However, fortunately after struggling for the longest time, Tommy was finally cancer-free, but he lost a pinky finger to the disease.
That’s when Tommy decided that it was time he expanded his business even further so that apart from his own profits, he got to help the community with his earnings. Hence, he especially dedicated his goodwill donations to multiple cancer foundations and charitable institutes. In order to pursue a better way of catering to all aspects of his business, he wanted significant funding and so turned towards Shark Tank.
Taking his good looks and charming personality, Tommy dressed up as The Real Elf and showed up on the sets of Shark Tank. Naturally, he got the holiday special episode, and even when the sharks were in the festive spirit, they were a bit taken aback by Tommy’s whole act. When Tommy was done, he introduced himself out of character and told the sharks about everything he had experienced so far with his business and personal life.
The judges were clearly very impressed and, at the same time, sympathetic towards his personal life story. Moreover, they were also moved by his charitable nature, and so they were eager to help him. However, Kevin and Mark Cuban were the first to quit on him because he already had a full-time job, and the business was taking up too much effort from the fact that Tommy was playing the character himself. That’s when Barbara jumped in with a new idea.
Tommy had made a pitch for $125,000 in exchange for 25% equity, but Barbara countered with the innovation of assurance. She said she’ll do the deal with $50,000 in cash and the remaining $75,000 in loan. However, she wanted 35% equity. Moreover, she promised all this only as long as a certain percentage of Tommy’s sales was going to a cancer charity with a guarantee. Now, this offer stumped Tommy, but eventually, he agreed.
Safe to say, he made a great choice to agree with Barbara, as today, he and his business are thriving. He still works full time and caters to The Real Elf in an occasional and seasonal aspect. However, thanks to marketing and demand, his business is a success. For bookings and details, you can check out his website, The Real Elf. He also has accompanying merchandise with his brand for people who are a fan of his celebrity status.
Our Review of The Real Elf
An honest review of The Real Elf means we hire the services through their website. However, as they are exclusive bookings for big events, it is not quite possible to experience The Real Elf act unless you hire their services. Once we can have an event of that level and hire The Real Elf for their services, we may be able to give an honest, experienced, real-life review of whether the services are worth it.
Pros of The Real Elf
The best part about The Real Elf is that it is, in fact, actually real. Played by the real person Tommy Holl.
Cons of The Real Elf
The only disadvantage of The Real Elf seemingly is that a single person plays it, and he has to make a choice for his appearances and cater to events accordingly.
Who Is The Real Elf For?
The Real Elf is for events, gatherings, parties, and the Christmas holiday spirit.
Are There Any Alternatives?
Era Spooky Elf Costumes
Quite obviously, you can purchase an elf costume for much cheaper online and play an elf character yourself at any of your parties or event.
Our Final Thoughts
Tommy Holl has become a small celebrity thanks to his work and philanthropy. He is a great guy and a people person in every aspect. He deserved the support he got from people and later from the Shark Tank judges. Hopefully, he will be able to expand his showbiz team and hire other people and train them to perform his act. That’s when he can truly feel settled like a boss and simply oversee the business operations.