If you are a big name celebrity and need some extra cash, but don't want to be seen as "selling out" by the sharks in the Variety section, then there is only one thing for you to do: foreign commercials.

During my stay in Japan (June to December of 2000), I encountered tv spots for assorted brands of canned coffee by Brad Pitt, Mariah Carey, Stevie Wonder , and Tiger Woods. However, by far the most entertaining cameo featured Nicolas Cage (you might remember him from such films as City of Angels and Peggy-Sue Got Married).

Here then is a recreation of that commercial's script.

Scene: We are in the middle of a press conference. CAGE sits at a table next to a smiling, middle-aged TRANSLATOR woman. Assorted REPORTERS are asking questions, which CAGE fields through his TRANSLATOR.

REPORTER: (in Japanese) What do you think of Japan?

The TRANSLATOR translates this question for CAGE.

CAGE: Japan? I love Japan... sushi... uh, Mount Fuji...

The TRANSLATOR begins to translate CAGE's words back into Japanese as CAGE is talking.

Shot changes to look at the REPORTERS, and alternates back to a shots of CAGE, who wrinkles his forehead, as if he sees something strange in the audience of REPORTERS. The shot of the REPORTERS slowly zooms in on one particular female REPORTER, who is wearing simple pearl stud earrings.

CAGE: I love... I love...

The shot of the REPORTER is now zoomed in all the way to her pearl stud earring. Shots of CAGE show a look of dreamy wonder. The woman's earring falls off her ear, falls to the floor and bounces a couple of times, sounding and looking very much like a pachinko ball.

CAGE: (shouting) I love pachinko!

CAGE jumps up from the press conference and dashes out of the building and into an idling white limousine.

CAGE: Look out Sankyo I'm comin'!

Shot changes to splash screen with information about the pachinko parlour, while the audio continues to play the whoops of a very excited CAGE.

See this commercial in its tiny Quicktime splendor at http://www.tokyodv.com/feature/NickCageTranslate.html

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