Nic Cage Was Unknowingly the Face of a Japanese Snack Food
Celebrity endorsements are great. Having a well-known and respected face attached to a product (literally speaking, if they're on the packaging) is a surefire way to attract customers and earn consumer trust without them even having to use the product first. It is, generally speaking, a rule of thumb to let said celebrity know their likeness will be used for marketing purposes. A Japanese snack company neglected to tell Nicolas Cage that he was currently the face of one of its products.
Last week, news outlets such as Fox News reported that Cage was officially a brand ambassador for Riska, and the partnership coincides with the Japanese release of his film "Army of One." The item features a still image of Cage's face from the movie.
— ライブドアニュース (@livedoornews) October 2, 2017
Today, however, SyFy Wire apparently got an "urgent press release" from film distribution company Film Nation, clarifying that Cage was not, in fact, an official spokesperson for the puffed corn stick product.
The release says:
Nicolas Cage is in no way engaged with an endorsement for the Japanese snack food brand Riska as recently reported in the news media. Mr. Cage had no prior knowledge that the product was being created, nor did he grant permission to use his likeness in this way. The items were created for the Japanese release of "My Target, Bin Laden" (released as "Army of One" in the U.S.) and bore the artwork from the film. They were limited in number and purely intended to be promotional items that would be supplied to movie ticket holders in three theaters.
The company apologized for the promotional item, stating that it did not intend any harm to Cage's image and reputation.
It's funny. There's a running gag that most modern cartoons have borrowed a plot point from "The Simpsons." Sometimes, "The Simpsons" even predicts real-life occurrences years prior. This really reminds us of the time Homer, well, found out his face was used to advertise a Japanese snack food without his knowledge.
In the eternal words of Nic Cage as Benjamin Gates in "National Treasure," this promotional gaffe is "really quite something."