Ashton Kutcher’s Popchips Ad Sparks Controversy, Pulled After Online Outcry

The “Two and a Half Men” star’s latest commercial for the potato chip brand is being called “offensive” and “racist” across the web

Actor Ashton Kutcher plays a Bollywood character named “Raj” in recent Popchips ad (Image: YouTube)

Ashton Kutcher’s Popchips ad campaign released earlier this week, where the actor wears brown makeup and plays a Bollywood character named “Raj” with a thick (and noticeably fake) accent, has been removed from the snack food company’s website and  Facebook page.

The $1.5 million campaign featured Popchips’ “president of pop culture” as four different kinds of guys seeking love: Nigel, the Brit; Swordfish, a tattooed biker; a fashionable character toting a pup, and “Raj.” Popchips is not mentioned at any point in 1:38 minute commercial.

Indian-Americans are taking offense to the recent ad, bashing both Kutcher and Popchips.

Co-founder of Activate Anil Dash took to his blog to comment on the commercial, calling it “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.”

Keith Belling, founder and CEO of Popchips, posted a message on the company’s website addressing the ad:

We received a lot feedback about the dating campaign parody we launched today and appreciate everyone who took the time to share their point of view. Our team worked hard to create a light-hearted parody featuring a variety of characters that was meant to provide a few laughs. We did not intend to offend anyone. I take full responsibility and apologize to anyone we offended.

Watch the video below:


Do you think Ashton Kutcher’s Popchips ad is offensive? Let us know what you think in the comment section.

2 Responses to Ashton Kutcher’s Popchips Ad Sparks Controversy, Pulled After Online Outcry

  1. Charla Church says:

    I don’t see a problem with the ad, I mean, he is an actor, right? Actors wear all sorts of make-up and costumes….thats why it’s called “Acting”!

  2. loutee says:

    I can’t see what the “hoopla” is all about…I’ve heard Ashton even talk in “Black” slang and didn’t find it offensive at all, even funny!

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