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get that cash

11 celebrities who mortified themselves for that sweet, sweet ad money

Yes, that IS Owen Wilson trying to sell sofas to you before Gogglebox.

SOMETIMES, THERE’S A great marriage between a celebrity and an endorsement deal, like Jean-Claude Van Damme’s Coors ads, or George Clooney for Nespresso.

But other times, the relationship is… toxic. Like all of these.

1. Brad Pitt’s lovely Chanel poem

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Has anything been more roundly mocked than Brad Pitt’s wanky Chanel ad? The actor was shot in artsy black and white, and recited this poem about… something or other:

It’s not a journey. Every journey ends but we go on. The world turns and we turn with it, plans disappear, dreams take over, but wherever I go. There you are. My luck, my fate, my fortune. Chanel No 5… Inevitable.

He’d certainly get first prize in the Feis. But everyone else just had a laugh.

2. Kim Kardashian opening a Charmin toilet

Kim Kardashian has never been more #iconic than when she was the special guest at the grand opening of a Charmin public toilet in 2010.

She didn’t have to do a full ad campaign, thank god, but she did have to give this amazing(ly awful) statement:

With my recent transition to New York, I’ve been checking out all the gifts the City has to offer visitors and New Yorkers alike. During the holiday shopping season, I’m happy to join Charmin as they give the gift of the Restrooms near Times Square.

Give your loved ones the gift of restrooms this Christmas.

3. Iggy Pop doing car insurance ads

AdsNTrailers / YouTube

One can only assume that his lust for life got so expensive that he needed to supplement his income with a series of ads for Swiftcover. That’s OK Iggy.

4. Owen Wilson flogging sofas

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You know before Gogglebox on Channel 4, when a blonde man jumps on a sofa and gets cosy? That’s Owen Wilson. The Hollywood actor. We need to understand this better, Owen. You have to help us.

5. Johnny Rotten doing ads for butter

butter YouTube YouTube

The Sex Pistols frontman had a dodgy few years thanks to record label woes, and wound up on I’m A Celebrity in 2004 and in Country Life butter ads a few years later.

He didn’t enjoy his time on I’m A Celeb very much, but said he loved working with “the butter people”:

When I worked with the butter people, they gave me a free hand. I enjoyed working with them very, very much, and there was a lot of mutual respect. But it wasn’t done for any scandalous reasons. It was quite anarchistic of them to want to connect themselves to Mr Rotten.

LoweCafeina / YouTube

Indeed. Ozzy Osbourne did ads for I Can’t Believe It’s Not Butter in 2006, but at that stage the Prince of Darkness had been thoroughly demystified after four seasons of The Osbournes, so it wasn’t as much of a shock.

6. JLS plastering their faces on condoms

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JLS were a boyband that enjoyed a bit of success after being runners-up on the X Factor in 2008 before splitting five years later. (Shame on you for forgetting that.)

At the height of their fame in 2010, they partnered with Durex to release a range of condoms called Just Love Safe (JLS, geddit?) with their faces plastered on the boxes. Safe sex is a great cause to support, of course, but your face on condoms? Rather you than us, lads.

7.  Jessie J doing… this for Tuc crackers

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Not at all sure what the marching band outfit had to do with it (even in the full TV ad), but get that money, Jessica.

8. Bob Dylan standing sullenly in a Victoria’s Secret ad

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How we would have loved to be a fly on the wall during THAT meeting. “Who would we like for this campaign?” “Definitely Bob Dylan. We must have Bob. He’s such a great fit.”

And as luck would have it, the musician said in 1965 that the one thing he would sell out for was:

Ladies’ undergarments.

So didn’t that work out well? Kind of? In fact not at all, because Bob leering at Adriana Lima while she flirts with a wall is profoundly unnerving?

Daniel Herrera / YouTube

9. Mary J Blige for Burger King

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Burger King pulled an ad featuring Mary J Blige almost instantly in April of 2012 after it was criticised for perpetuating racial stereotypes.

In it, Mary sings about crispy chicken, though she later said that the original concept involved a dream sequence that didn’t make it to the final cut. She was pretty upset about the whole thing:

My heart dropped down to my stomach. I got this sweat and I said, real calm, “This too shall pass.” But it just kept getting worse and worse and worse… I would never just bust out singing about chicken and chicken wings.

Ah Mary.

10. Elton John for the English postal service

rugbydad678 / YouTube

Actually, we’ve revised our opinions on this one. It’s genius. And sneaking in a promo for his album while he was at it? Elton! You’re gas.

11. And Ringo Starr (and The Monkees) for Pizza Hut

appositosostegno / YouTube

Ah Ringo. This is nuts, but we love you, you mad scone.

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