Many famous Hollywood actors and actresses who would never appear on a TV commercial in the United States, appear on commercials in Japan. From what I hear, it is considered "cool" for the Hollywood famous to be on commercials in Japan. Besides being "cool" these stars can get paid huge amounts of money to appear in commercials while in Japan and they take a vacation while they're at it.
Throw on top of that how Asian people really don't care about these sorts of things and these stars can have their cake and eat it too as appearing in commercials for products that they would never advertise in the States is a gravy train job in Japan.
There's no risk of doing a commercial in Asia for a product that might damage one's career as people in the west will never see it.
Currently, there is a very silly TV commercial with Leonardo DiCaprio selling automobile tires here.
Up until the early 1990's, cigarettes commercials were still on Japanese TV. At that time an American star, who was thought of as the epitome of the macho American actor, James Coburn appeared in many TV commercials for Lark cigarettes. In several of the later ones, he even spoke Japanese. Even Roger Moore of James Bond fame gets into the act.
Here, once again, in thanks to the Internet Archives, is a retrospect of Lark Cigarette TV commercials featuring James Coburn, Charles Bronson and Roger Moore.
DOUBLE CLICK ON IMAGE TO SEE FULL SCREEN
DOUBLE CLICK ON IMAGE TO SEE FULL SCREEN---------
Keywords: TV Commercial, Mike Rogers, Marketing Japan, commercial, cigarettes, James Coburn, Mike in Tokyo Rogers, Lark, Bronson, Roger Moore