Obama Earns Money For U.S. By Appearing In Japanese Television Commercial

Top Headlines

Recent News

Details Of Obama’s Climate Change Plan

President Obama unveiled Monday a plan to increase the country’s clean power usage that many are calling the strongest action ever taken by a U.S. president to combat the effects of climate change. Here are some key details of Obama’s climate change plan

Rescuers Heroically Help Beached Garbage Back Into Ocean

ATLANTIC BEACH, NC—In what many described as an inspiring display of selflessness and teamwork, a group of rescuers heroically saved a beached mound of garbage by helping the stranded trash back into the ocean, eyewitnesses reported Thursday.
End Of Section
  • More News
TV Listings
Just Like Everything Else!: Fox 8 p.m. EDT/7 p.m. ABC Pete's wife is still on him about building that darn shed, these kids are going to be the death of Sheila and Dave, and the hot next-door neighbor is up in EVERYBODY'S business! Sunday nights on ABC couldn't be any more familiar!

Special Coverage

Entertainment

  • How Theaters Are Trying To Win Back Moviegoers

    The number of Americans who went to the movies hit a 20-year low in 2014, leaving theaters scrambling to find ways to incentivize the public to see new releases on the big screen rather than watch films at home or on the internet. Here are some methods theaters are using to win back audiences and increase box office sales:

Fantasy Sports

FIFA Frantically Announces 2015 Summer World Cup In United States

Global Soccer Tournament To Kick Off In America Later This Afternoon

ZURICH—After the Justice Department indicted numerous executives from world soccer’s governing body on charges of corruption and bribery, frantic and visibly nervous officials from FIFA held an impromptu press conference Wednesday to announce that the United States has been selected to host this summer’s 2015 World Cup.

Obama Earns Money For U.S. By Appearing In Japanese Television Commercial

A scene from the president's advertisement for Glico Pretz Ham & Cheese.
A scene from the president's advertisement for Glico Pretz Ham & Cheese.

WASHINGTON—In an effort to obtain badly needed revenue for the ailing U.S. economy, President Barack Obama recently appeared in a 30-second television spot for the popular Japanese snack product Glico Pretz Ham & Cheese, White House sources reported Wednesday.

According to aides, the advertisement will air nationally throughout Japan and will feature the president endorsing a savory, stick-shaped cracker snack manufactured by the Ezaki Glico corporation, which agreed to pay Obama a one-time fee of $300,000 plus residuals, compensation to be used exclusively for U.S. economic stimulus purposes.

Glico executives say they hope consumers associate the president's face with Pretz Ham & Cheese from now on.

"While the president does not ordinarily endorse retail products, he was willing to make an exception for Glico Pretz Ham & Cheese as a way of easing the current financial burden on our country," said White House Press Secretary Jay Carney, stressing that the commercial's quick, two-day shoot outside of Yokohama took little time out of Obama's schedule and was of the highest production quality. "Also, we have been assured by Ezaki Glico CEO Katsuhisa Ezaki that the TV advertisement, and accompanying billboard and bus ads, will only be seen in Japan and will portray the president in a very flattering, elegant light befitting a world leader of his stature."

Representatives for Ezaki Glico confirmed this week that the visually opulent ad will feature the president wearing swim trunks and relaxing with a group of young Japanese male friends by the side of an animated swimming pool filled with melted cheese and ham.

According to sources involved in its production, the spot will also contain a video montage of a smiling President Obama hitting a baseball, playing the cello, and dancing with a pair of beautiful Japanese women before biting into a ham-and-cheese-flavored cracker and saying directly into the camera, in Japanese, "I like the big taste of Pretz, the perfect snack with the big crunch."

Ezaki Glico marketing executives said the ad, which features a brief three-second shot of film actress Meg Ryan riding on horseback with Obama, was greatly bolstered by the president's participation.

"Everyone in Japan knows the face of Barack Obama, and we believe he is the perfect man to share loving words about the delicious Pretz snack," Ezaki Glico marketing executive Kiyotaka Shimamori said through a translator, adding that the president was very cooperative throughout the nearly 50 takes required to film a special green-screened "moon sequence." "Mr. Obama looks very good in the commercial holding the Pretz snack, eating the Pretz snack, and dancing with the pretty girls."

While refusing to comment on the issue at length, President Obama did take a moment out of a press conference Wednesday to address his appearance in the commercial.

"Again, this was a simple revenue-generating measure and in no way does it present a conflict of interest for me or my administration," the president told reporters. "That being said, in accordance with my contract with the Ezaki Glico corporation, I would like to briefly add that Glico Pretz Ham & Cheese is a fine product, a delicious product, and one that I fully endorse for snacking morning, afternoon, and night."

The president then procured a bag of Pretz Ham & Cheese snacks from behind the lectern, smiled, and sang a 10-second Pretz advertising jingle in Japanese for the assembled press corps.