50 US Celebrities Sell Out for Foreign Commercial Bucks
One of the easiest ways for a Hollywood celebrity to earn a quick buck is to appear in TV commercials overseas, Japan in particular. Japanese companies have always been willing to shell out millions just to get American celebs to push their products, and these celebs are only all-too willing to do it with a big smile on their faces, never mind that the ads are almost always cheesy and, in keeping with the usual Japanese TV fare, a bit crazy. After all, audiences in the United States won’t really see them on their own TV sets, would they?
Not on their TV sets they won’t, but on their computers, well, that’s an entirely different story. In today’s world of YouTube and all those other video sites, these commercials are now readily available online for everyone to see. Here are 50 of those commercials. With the exception of some, most of them can be quite embarrassing.
1. Kiefer Sutherland
Even in a cheesy commercial such as this one for Calorie Mate, Jack Bauer still takes himself waaay too seriously.
2. John Travolta
Travolta dancing with synchronized swimmers’ legs in the foreground pushing some canned beverage doesn’t make the least bit of sense, but then again, so do many commercials in this list.
3. Arnold Schwarzenegger
Whoever gets to face the Governator in his inevitable run for the White House in the future would do well to remind voters of this image of Arnold laughing maniacally while standing on top of a pile of gold coins.
4. Hulk Hogan
It’s official: Hogan’s tough “Hulkster” persona is one big fraud.
5. Nicolas Cage
Cage will accept ANY role, however embarrassing.
6. Jodie Foster
She’s absolutely beautiful in this one.
7. Andy Warhol
Real artists are supposed to be self-righteous creatures who balk at the idea of selling out, aren’t they? Well, here’s an exception.
8. Cameron Diaz
For a company in a country where the idea of celebrating Christmas is buying a cake, SoftBank sure spent a fortune on having a Hollywood A-lister like Diaz appear in a Christmas-themed ad.
9. George Clooney
What’s with the idea of having Clooney say “let’s go” when he’s all alone in the car? What did he think he was driving, the Batmobile?
10. George Lucas
To see why Lucas belongs behind a camera, watch this ad. Then you’ll see the inspiration behind Hayden Christensen’s wooden acting in the last two Star Wars prequels.
11. Ben Stiller
Could Ben Stiller get any more pathetic? Apparently, the answer to that is a resounding yes.
12. Bruce Willis
Somehow, I get the feeling that while we laugh at how ridiculous Willis is in this crazy ad, he’s saying more than just the “move you” catchphrase at the end, like he’s actually replacing the first four-letter word with another one that starts with an F.
13. Leonardo DiCaprio
I don’t know which is more annoying: the sound of Leo whooping it up like he did in Titanic, or the grating “You Are My Sunshine” in the soundtrack.
14. Michael Jackson
Here’s Michael promoting Suzuki scooters back when he still looked human.
15. James Coburn
This ad tells us we can fight off bad guys just like Coburn did by smoking cancer sticks. That’s truth in advertising for you.
16. Paul Newman
Much weirder than Newman eating a flower in this commercial is the idea of him ever actually owning one of those UC Fuji credit cards.
17. Britney Spears
Let’s look at the bright side: at least the Japanese company that makes GG Tea had enough sense to get Britney to appear in this ad back when she still looked hot.
18. Andy Garcia
One of the more dignified commercials in this list.
19. Jeff Goldblum
Goldblum’s geeky persona is perfect for this product.
20. Kevin Costner
“When I first began directing, they all said it was impossible”, Costner says in this coffee ad. Same could be said of his acting.
21. Sheena Easton
What’s up with the silhouettes behind her?
22. Harrison Ford
Ford walks like he’s about to crap in his towel towards the end.
23. Dennis Hopper
The sight of Hopper playing with a rubber ducky in the tub reportedly boosted sales of Tsumura bath products. Go figure.
24. Michael J. Fox
Michael J. Fox is no stranger to cheesy work, but this one ad for some canned tea just takes the cake.
Never mind the awkward samurai sword swinging and the terrible background music. Madonna saying “I’m pure” is quite the winner.
26. Jennifer Love Hewitt
So does this mean she understands Japanese?
27. Kyle Maclachlan
Now that was the most serious facial expression I’ve ever seen Kyle Maclachlan make.
28. Paul Reubens (as Pee-wee Herman)
Trust the Japanese to make Pee-wee Herman seem creepier than usual.
29. Ray Charles
Good thing they didn’t have Ray Charles driving the Honda while blurting out, “It’s a Miracle”.
30. Winona Ryder
With the way her Hollywood career is going, Winona’s gonna need all the Japanese commercial gigs she can get.
31. Gwyneth Paltrow
Here’s Gwyneth appearing in a Korean commercial for a clothing company called Bean Pole. How fitting.
32. Charles Bronson
The sound of bullets whizzing past as Bronson practically bathes himself in Mandom never fails to crack me up.
33. Ashley Judd
Is it me, or did that fire hydrant just turn into a throbbing and pumping double-headed penis the moment Ashley Judd sat on it?
34. Brad Pitt
So drinking Roots coffee makes one brave and strong enough to push company property down a flight of stairs. Wish it also makes one look like Brad Pitt.
35. Steven Seagal
At least he actually speaks Japanese, and didn’t sound ridiculous while saying his lines.
36. Charlie Sheen
Charlie Sheen, he who has slept with 5,000 gorgeous women, in bed with a big girl? Now that’s taking suspension of disbelief a bit too far.
37. Sylvester Stallone
A ham actor pushing ham. Absolutely perfect.
38. Meg Ryan
Somehow, Meg Ryan manages to still look adorable even when mouthing off silly lines like “Navi Navi Dingo”.
39. Mariah Carey
Nescafe hires one of the most famous singers in the world, and all it ever does is make Mariah act like a bimbo in a weird-ass commercial.
40. Sharon Stone
One might think this is some sort of an audition piece for the Catwoman movie, what with the way she gingerly walks on ledges in this commercial. She got the villain part in that movie, by the way
41. Eddie Murphy
Eddie Murphy has always been a douche. Here’s proof.
42. Mel Gibson
What the hell does “A Song For You” have anything to do with Mel Gibson and Asahi beer?
43. Stevie Wonder
Just love the way Stevie yells “Fire”.
44. Tom Berenger
As with all other cigarette commercials, this one makes absolutely no sense at all.
One brand that has consistently hired beautiful Hollywood faces over the years is Lux. Here are some of their TV spots:
45. Anne Hathaway
46. Natalie Portman
47. Jennifer Lopez
48. Jennifer Connelly
49. Lara Flynn Boyle
50. Rachael Leigh Cook
Popularity: 1% [?]