50 Ads Starring Oscar Winners A few great spots, some amusing ones, and some real duds

There's a lingering perception that actors who do commercials are either desperate or hacks. In fact, neither is necessarily true. Looking back at all the Academy Award winners since 1970—the cream of the crop in Hollywood—an outright majority have filmed ads at some point in their careers. Some stopped when their careers solidified—others continued to do commercial work even after reaching the pinnacle of their industry. We've collected 50 such ads starring Oscar winners, ranging from the '60s (Dustin Hoffman for Volkswagen) to the present day (Timothy Hutton and Cuba Gooding Jr. both for Groupon). There are a handful of great spots here, some amusing ones and more than a few duds. You'll notice a bunch from Europe and Japan, done by actors hoping to keep their reputations unsullied in America. And if you watch only one of these 50 ads, make it the Russell Crowe video for Avondale College. Words cannot convey its awesomeness.

F. Murray Abraham1

F. Murray Abraham'
Advertiser: Listerine
Click to view. Oscar: Best actor, 1984, for Amadeus

Kim Basinger2

Kim Basinger'
Advertiser: Peugot
Click to view. Oscar: Best supporting actress, 1997, for L.A. Confidential

Kathy Bates3

Kathy Bates'
Advertiser: DirecTV
Click to view. Oscar: Best actress, 1990, for Misery

Halle Berry4

Halle Berry'
Advertiser: Revlon
Click to view. Oscar: Best actress, 2001, for Monster's Ball

Juliette Binoche5

Juliette Binoche'
Advertiser: Lancôme Poême
Click to view. Oscar: Best supporting actress, 1996, for The English Patient

Cate Blanchett6

Cate Blanchett'
Advertiser: Tim Tams
Click to view. Oscar: Best supporting actress, 2004, for The Aviator

Marlon Brando7

Marlon Brando'
Voiceover for Pepsi
Click to view. Oscars: Best actor, 1954, for On the Waterfront; Best actor, 1972, for The Godfather

Jeff Bridges8

Jeff Bridges'
Voiceover for Hyundai
Click to view. Oscar: Best actor, 2009, for Crazy Heart

Adrien Brody9

Adrien Brody'
Advertiser: Stella Artois
Click to view. Oscar: Best actor, 2002, for The Pianist

Nicolas Cage10

Nicolas Cage'
Advertiser: Sankyo Pachinko (Japan)
Click to view. Oscar: Best actor, 1995, for Leaving Las Vegas

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AdFreak is a daily blog of the best and worst of creativity in advertising, media, marketing and design. Follow us as we celebrate (and skewer) the latest, greatest, quirkiest and freakiest commercials, promos, trailers, posters, billboards, logos and package designs around. Edited by Adweek's Tim Nudd.

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