Arnold Schwarzenegger & Noodles: His Late ’80s Japanese Adverts

Arnold Schwarzenegger smiling happily
I’ll be… noodles. lol

Hollywood muscle monstrosity Arnold Schwarzenegger always has a home on our blog. Usually that involves including him as the lead actor for whatever failed/stupid TV show we can think up.

Despite his fame and wealth, back in 1989 he did a series of bizarre commercials (through to 1991) for Nissin Cup – the instant noodle company. Today, let’s revel in such imagery!

Schwarzenegger & Noodles

Right, so there he is. Kind of weird seeing an enormously buff bloke tucking into a tiny plastic pot of instant noodles, isn’t it? Mr. Universe enjoys $1 instant noodles like the rest of us, eh?

It confuses us why successful actors do stuff like this – selling out, essentially. What purpose did this serve for Schwarzenegger? Why is he in the adverts?

Famously, Sean Connery did some whisky ads in Japan in the ’80s as well. That inspired a plot thread for the film Lost in Translation (2003).

Then a few years back Brad Pitt landed this one on us. It’s not like the guy is struggling for work or is lacking funds.

So what was the purpose? A vanity project? Favour to a friend? Free hair products? Here he is spouting a load of pretentious nonsense (and, ZOMG, look how dead fit he is!).

But we’re on about Big Arnie here! And his seemingly unquenchable lust for instant noodles (check out how they’re made). The insinuation here is any male desiring his muscle-bound form should indulge in them.

Absolutely nothing to do with the 100 hours a week pumping iron in the gym as veins bulge out of your forehead. It’s all about the noodle!

We had a look around for information as to why Schwarzenegger’s adverts took place (asides from the obvious monetary gain).

It’s possible this was to strengthen the Schwarzenegger brand over in Japan to promote his upcoming films. Maybe.

We did find a cute site called Made In Japan documenting Schwarzenegger’s adverts in marginally broken English. Why the beefcake likes to eat instant cup noodles? Some insights:

"The commercial became very famous and people start buying the instant cup noodles after watching the commercial because Arnold Schwarzenegger performed very well in the commercial of Nissin instant cup noodles.

It was a very funny ad also. Arnold Schwarzenegger said that he himself likes to eat the noodles very much and he thinks that non-sticky flavored noodles can change your mood anytime."

Any mothers out there reading this, there’s also some useful tips on how to keep your sprogs happy:

"Mothers now a days, keep the noodles at home so that whenever their kids get hungry, they will cook noodles for them instantly.

It is good that kids do like the noodles and eat them easily without bothering their mothers but they should have a look at the heath advantages and disadvantages of noodles.

Excessive usage of noodles is not good for the health as it doesn’t contain any kind of healthy ingredients."

So… no real revelations on Schwarzenegger’s appearance in an instant cup of noodles ad, then? Quite the step isn’t it – in 1990 he was busy filming the all-time cinematic classic Terminator 2: Judgment Day.

Then he seemed to zoom over to Japan for a recording of him eating some instant noodles.

Clearly, 1989’s expedition wasn’t enough to slake his desire to do weird stuff in adverts. The below is for Alinamin V (アリナミンV) energy drinks.

Well, we don’t know what the hell he was doing out there. But whatever it was he seemed to get stuck in a bizarre commercial loop. In total, between 1989 and 1992 he filmed 10 minutes worth of commercials.

That Twitter thing above is a merger of all his ads for the vitamin drink. This is one of the proper ones.

Thank bench presses he was able to escape his captor, make a break for it, and return to American in time to film True Lies (1994).

Only The Terminator could manage such a feat. Legend has it Japan has swallowed up dozens of A List actors over the years, all of whom are stuck on a perpetual loop of debasing themselves day in, day out.

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