Celebrities will have you think that they ‘d never stoop so low for some extra cash. Making commercials in the U.S. is seen as selling out or doing anything for a quick buck, and quickly loses them their respect. But thanks to the internet, we’ve discovered that everyone has a price.
It seems A-listers simply take their business elsewhere and away from their American audience, hoping that it stays under wraps. And they’ll act in all sorts of bizarre ways to grab the attention of people oversees. Check out the funniest and weirdest commercials that A-listers agreed to do.
Justin Bieber for SoftBank
Canadian pop star Justin has made a few commercials for Japanese telecom company SoftBank, which saw him speaking visiting a Japanese girl’s high school. He took a string of selfies, spoke Japanese, and flirted with the students. It was all pretty cringy stuff, and most of all it didn’t make any sense why he was there.
In fact, he himself didn’t look too sure of why he was on the set. People commented on how unusually shy he was when he had to act in front of the camera. If you’ve ever wanted to see Justin pretend to smash fruit together in front of a class or squeeze the chin of an older gentleman, the footage exists.
Madonna for Takara Japanese Sake
Popstar Madonna made a commercial for the Japanese spirit company Takara in 1995. In what many would consider is culturally insensitive, she dons a traditional Kimono dress, wooden geta shoes, with exaggerated eye makeup intended to enhance non-existent east-Asian facial features. But the content of the commercial is even more puzzling.
The ad starts with Madonna playing the flute under the moonlight near a supposed ancient ruin. She then encounters a golden dragon who she immediately sword fights (where did the sword come from?) and out of nowhere a glass orb drops into her hand. Naturally, it morphs into a glass of Saki, and she declares “I’m pure.” Nothing about this commercial makes sense, and we think the samurai-warrior version of the ’80s singer only did more damage than good.
Arnold Schwarzenegger for Nissin Cup Noodle
You’ve seen former bodybuilder turned actor turned governor of California, Arnold Schwarzenegger, do a lot over the years. But you’ve never seen him act the way he does for Nissin Cup Noodle commercials. He filmed several for the instant noodle brand, which saw him dressing up in the most ridiculous clothes and acting downright crazy.
In one commercial, he carries an old Japanese woman across a field on his back and trying to converse. In another, he balances a big red sports car on his shoulder. One of them features Arnold holding a huge machine gun in one hand, cup noodle in the other, with a backdrop of an exploding mountain landscape. We’re not totally sure what any of these were trying to convey, but they succeeded in getting our attention. We only wish they were played during ad breaks in America.