Commericals Are Really Just Short “Shorts”

This Adweek article claims, “Selling Out Is Now In.” Somehow, I doubt that. Even in Hollywood.

As those of you who have unsuccessfully courted A-list celebrities for your U.S. campaigns know, despite being offered beaucoup bucks, incredibly short working hours and ridiculously lavish perks, many of these famous folk have said no way for fear of tarnishing their images.
But in recent years, American advertising has been looking more enticing to once-uninterested glitterati. Top-tier talents who either shunned advertising entirely or snuck abroad to sell out are warming up to the idea of appearing in U.S. ads, according to industry insiders, from the executives who negotiate the deals to the directors who shoot the spots.

Maybe most movies are so bad these days, the big name actors are desperate to do work they can be proud of. I don’t know if DeNiro is proud of his American Express spot, but he has every right to be–it’s one of the best spots on TV.

About David Burn

Co-founder and editor of AdPulp. I wrote my first ad for a political candidate when I was 17 years old. She won her race and I felt the seductive power of advertising for the first time. I worked for seven agencies in five states before launching my own practice in 2009. Today, I am head of brand strategy and creative at Bonehook in Portland, Oregon.


  1. “Selling Out Is Now In” just sounds demeaning, as it should be. The thing is, if it’s a decent commercial that is worth remembering, I don’t think the A-lister would have to worry about his or her precious reputation.

  2. It used to be that stars could do commercials in places like Japan and still maintain their “integrity” here in the U.S. Now, since anyone can watch those Japanese commercials online anyway, I guess the celebs are asking themselves what’s the point in limiting their options to foreign spots.