Joi Ito's Web

Joi Ito's conversation with the living web.

schwarz4.jpgI had breakfast on Monday with a entertainment lawyer who used to book a lot of these expensive Japanese ads using foreign talent. She said it has decreased significantly due to lower budgets and lower popularity of foreign talent in Japan. So these clips on are probably going to end up as priceless gems, a genre that died with the Japanese bubble. hosts video clips of American stars who have advertised in Japan, from Brat Pitt to Stevie Wonder, with Luc Besson and Harrison Ford thrown in between. Some of the clips are amusing to watch for American audiences, presumedly because most of these folks wouldn't advertise consumer products in the United States. While the content might be funny, the site has a strong derisive tone: "Japander: a western star who uses his or her fame to make large sums of money in a short time by advertising products in Japan that they would probably never use." Somehow it's hypocritical for these stars to shill for Japanese consumer products, as though American stars who advertise in the United States always use what they promote? Either way, many of these clips show funny sides of familiar stars. Quicktime required.
One of my favorite commercials ever is Arnold Schwarzenegger in Arinamin V's commercial. He is playing mah-jong with important guests. He does a huge faux paux by winning the round when he should have let the guests win. His boss scolds him. Then he sneaks off to a corner, drinks the special drink while the customer is telling his boss the deal is off. Suddenly, as the drink takes effect, Arnold is transformed into a glittering entertainer and the guest is showered with mah-jong score counting stick and everyone is shouting and cheering. A MUST SEE. Here it is. (Or click the image...)


Wow that Arnie commercial is extreme, fun - he's an entertainment demon, a wild look in his eyes in a crazy suit - buff salaryman transformed into wildly grinning vision of energy drink goodness. I watch this sort of ad and I think, we don't have anything like this in the United States. With or without Arnold. And it's really too bad.

Thanks for pointing that one out Joi.

If you want a comparison video experience, check out with a 60 second clip of him promoting California Proposition 49 - money for afterschool programs. He's put a million dollars into this Prop 49 political campaign, including extensive TV advertising; some think it is a prelude to his future campaign for California Govenor. I wonder what voters would think if you ran that Arinamin V's commercial on TV in California during the campaign. (BTW - no mention of Japanese commercials on Arnold's official web site.) I think the ad is great fun but maybe some would think he's too zany to lead the state? I guess for Arnold having starred in so many movies, they could probably think about that without help from this commercial.

Missing are the Leonardo DiCaprio clips--the webmaster was threatened with a lawsuit.

You can also watch the equally whacked-out sequel. (~1Mb, Quicktime)

Dear Joi,

I love those Arnold Arinamin V commercials. What the heck do "josh-chinchin-pweepwee" and "dae-cho-pwee" mean? Does anyone know what Arnold is saying? I simply must know.

"Josh" is "yoshi" which is what people say when they have decided something and want to show that they are determined. "Chichin PweePwee" is kind of like "abracadabra"... Dae-cho-pwee! is a very exited form of "Daijyobu" but a "pwee" at the end so it sounds like "V" the name of the drink. ;-) These are really wonderful commercials. I would bet he asked when they meant, but I'm not sure.

Thanks. Cool to know.

So, what does "Daijyobu" mean? My eight year old daughter and I have been having loads of fun watching the commercials alot lately and yell out the tagline. My wife has no idea what we're talking about.

If you ever hear of this stuff becoming available on VHS, please let me know!


"Daijyobu" means..."ALL RIGHT!"

Thanks, Bill. Now my daughter and I know what we're saying!

Okay, I have yet another question just now posed by my 8 year old daughter. What is Arnold saying on the "Sixth Day" commercials? Does "neh-deli-sheki" mean "coming soon" or what?

THAT IS THE GREATEST!!!!!!!! ARNOLD RULES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

THAT IS THE GREATEST!!!!!!!! ARNOLD RULES!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I really enjoyed the Arinamin V commerical. I had heard about it sometime back, and now I've finally had the pleasure to see it. Thank you so much for posting it!

I really enjoyed the Arinamin V commerical. I had heard about it sometime back, and now I've finally had the pleasure to see it. Thank you so much for posting it!

I know that "Daijyobu" is also frequently used to ask if some one is ok (Daijyobu des ka), or to tell if someone that you are feelin' fine (Daijyobu des). Just in case anyone's interested! I love these commercials, about every US actor is in them- even the Simpsons are there and the show is a rarity in Japan! Let me know if there are any other sites with more commercials like this!