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American Celebs Who Were in British Commercials

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Where does a big-name celeb go when they want to make a lot of money for just a little bit of work? According to our list of American celebs who were in British commercials, the answer lies just across the pond! 

Recruiting celebs in foreign ads is a common practice, and it makes sense - celebrities in foreign commercials can rake in a big payday for just a commercial-length shoot. Best of all, they can cash in on roles they've already played: for example, Samuel L. Jackson as Nick Fury in a Sky Broadband ad, or Sylvester Stallone reliving Rocky's most notable scenes for Warburtons bakery. 

It turns out that some of our biggest names, including Al Pacino and Snoop Dogg, have been big draws for British commercials, proving that booking celebrities in foreign commercials can be a profitable move for both the celebrity and the British brand that's booked them. 

You might have missed these celebs' big British TV debuts, but don't miss our list of American celebs in foreign commercials! 

  • Bruce Willis and Sky Broadband
    Photo: s_bukley / Shutterstock
    Bruce Willis's Sky Broadband commercial was actually banned for being misleading. In the ad, Willis complains about the speed of his current Internet provider and is told by another character in the ad to, "Try Sky Broadband, it's totally unlimited". A voice-over then explains that the "service was £7.50 a month, however on-screen text stated the deal was only for existing Sky TV customers." According to BBC, "The Advertising Standards Authority said the ad was not sufficiently clear."

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  • Kevin Bacon and EE
    Photo: sagindie / flickr / CC-BY 2.0
    According to Campaign, Kevin Bacon's commercial for EE, a mobile phone network in the UK, features the star of Footloose and Apollo 13 in "a fat suit to illustrate the phrase 'totally bacon!' which is said in a British accent and is used to compliment customers for being '4G-ed up.'" Director of Brand at EE, Spencer McHugh, had this to say about the ad: "We wanted to create a memorable campaign that showcased the very best of what we do.  And getting Kevin Bacon to Wembley Stadium for the first time was the icing on the cake." 
  • Harvey Keitel and Direct Line
    Photo: David Shankbone / flickr / CC-BY 2.0
    Harvey Keitel reprised his role of "The Wolf" from Pulp Fiction as part of Direct Line's ad highlighting "the benefits of Direct Line's Home Insurance and Car Insurance products." According to Bought By Many, following the commercial's release, there was "an interesting Twitter debate going on." It seems people either loved the ads or absolutely hated them, and some felt Keitel had "sold out."

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  • Uma Thurman and Virgin Media
    Photo: Andrea Raffin / Shutterstock
    In 2007, Uma Thurman became the face of Virgin Media Services. As described by Virgin Media in a press release, in one of the ads the star gazes into the camera for "a seductive ten seconds." And in another ad, the media company cloned her to create multiple Umas that "pop up to demonstrate the company's unlimited and high-speed broadband service." 

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