When Hollywood Actors Sell Out

There are some celebs we expect to be flogging us stuff on the telly. Celebs, in other words, that have nothing to lose. Did Kerry Katona have any dignity to lose by flogging us frozen prawns? If anything, flogging us frozen prawns was the most respectable thing Kerry Katona has ever done.

Or Jamie Oliver flogging stuff for Sainsbury’s? That’s just good PR for his TV shows. Iggy Pop convincing us to get car insurance? Okay, that was a little odd. But generally, we don’t bat an eyelid.

When a bona-fide Hollywood A-lister starts shucking for cash, however, it’s a little odder. Witness the recent Magnum Gold advert starring Benicio Del Toro.

I mean, the man is a genuine Hollywood A-lister. He’s won an Oscar. And he’s pimping himself out for vanilla ice cream and caramel dipped in milk chocolate? Was The Wolfman that bad? Of course, he’s not alone. Here are our most memorable A-lister adverts, both good and bad. Let us know yours.

George Clooney – Nespresso


Sporting the kind of smug grin of a man who’s worked out the hole in his pocket is just big enough to fit his hand through and can now permanently play with his todger, Clooney’s coffee-maker ads do at least have a bit of knowing wit in their favour. But they make our list because good-guy Clooney is essentially shilling for parent-company Nestle, which has been under pressure because of the less-than-ethical ways it sells and markets various infant foods in the developing world. The ads produced a 35 per cent growth of the machines in the UK. Notably, they didn’t air in the States. Wonder why.

Ewan McGregor – Davidoff Adventure aftershave

Oh, Ewan. Granted, the Scot’s film output has always been a bit hit and miss, seemingly picking his projects via a game of iney-meeny-miney-mo, and giving extra attention to ones he can get his willy out in. But these TV-kickingly pretentious aftershave ads take the biscuit. “The scent of adventure in the air, leading me further and further into the extraordinary,” he drolls. Oh, shut your hole.

It has, however, inspired this rather brilliant parody ad, with the same pseudo-hippy words and soundtrack used over the scene from Trainspotting where he disappears into a loo full of shit in search of drugs from his arse. The scent of adventure indeed.

Nicholas Cage – Sankyo Pachinko

Wow. What to say about this? Yes, we’re slightly cheating here because it’s a Japanese commercial, and American stars can get away with anything in Japan. But even in this broad church, Nicholas Cage and his advert for Sankyo Pachinko stands alone.

Looking like he’s been medically-induced into action, he then sings a random list of things he likes, while playing the piano in the style of a man being fellated the entire time, before ending the song by screaming the product’s name as if a red hot poker is, at that exact second, burning it into his arsehole. I know what you’re thinking: next stop, Compare The Meerkat.

Sean Connery – Suntory Whiskey

Otherwise known as “the one Bill Murray’s Lost in Translation advert was based on”, it’s hard to know what’s funnier here. For one, it’s a whiskey ad where all that happens is that the former 007 takes a slug. For an entire minute. How, you ask? Well, by building up the experience to such an extend that by the time Connery does take a sip, it ends in what can only be described as the entire advert climaxing. Watch it. See if we’re lying. It’s an advert orgasm.

Will Ferrell – Apple

Why have we picked this Will Ferrell advert? Well, because it’s actually funny. Not “funny-by-accident” funny like the rest, but genuinely, actually funny. If you’re a big star doing an ad, this is the way to go. One, do it for a company most people like (Apple) and two, have a hand in the lines.

Best line? The ending. “I’m Will Ferrell,” he says, deadpan. “And I’m a porn actor”. It gets funnier each time you watch it. No, really, it does.