The video: A-list American actors often supplement their incomes by appearing in advertisements abroad. Brad Pitt and John Travolta, for example, have shilled for cell phones and soft drinks in Japan. Usually, though, the stars must at least utter a line or two to earn their hefty paychecks. Not so Julia Roberts, who remains silent throughout her new 45-second spot for Italy's Lavazza Coffee. (View the clip below.) Instead of talking, she merely poses as Botticelli's Venus, then flashes her famous megawatt smile after drinking a presumably tasty espresso. Roberts was paid a reported $1.5 million for this minimal effort.
The reaction: Roberts' pay may seem high, says Dan Hopper at Best Week Ever, but "that’s pretty much the going rate for getting Julia Roberts to stand, drink coffee, and smile (each action is 500k)." Don't discount her work in the ad, says Jessica Coen at Jezebel. "She does make three or four facial expressions, including 'contemplative' and 'joyous.'" Watch Julia Roberts' coffee commercial: