In the latest buzz (well, aside from his dramatic divorce from Demi Moore and dating rumours), Ashton Kutcher has taken on four different comedic personalities for a Popchips snacks ad campaign.
The campaign, with a budget estimated at USD1.5 million includes large-scale ATL (Above The Line) mediums such as video and outdoor ads, coupled with “noise” executed via social media platforms like Facebook and YouTube.
As much as it was “great working with Ashton” (as quoted from the official statement from Keith Belling, the chief executive at Popchips Inc.), the campaign received poor feedback within the first week of its launch.
Not only did the campaign hold a spoof dating theme, which didn’t bode well with Ashton current personal situation, it was also slammed for being marginally racist. This was especially in regards to the “Punk’d” star posing as an Indian man looking for love. Perhaps it was his accent or the getup – but the “Indian way” wasn’t exactly the best way to sell potato chips.
Well, can’t say we see the connection either.
The ad has since been taken down from Popchips’ Facebook page and YouTube channel after a barrage of online outcries from Indian-Americans but the unofficial versions can still be seen:
[youtube id=”AezA2DPVSGQ” width=”600″ height=”350″]
Uh, what was with the Kardashian comment, Ashton?
Tech entrepreneur Anil Dash called the ad, “a hackneyed, unfunny advertisement featuring Kutcher in brownface talking about his romantic options with the entire punchline being that he’s doing it in a fake-Indian outfit and voice. That’s it, there’s seriously no other gag.”
“If you find yourself putting brown makeup on a white person in 2012 so they can do a bad ‘funny’ accent in order to sell potato chips, you are on the wrong course. Make some different decisions”, he added.
Das Racist (an indie hip hip band) also expressed how unimpressed they are via Twitter:
Sigh. Oh, Ashton.