Publicist to source Hollywood stars for Australian brands

Emma Cooper, International Celebrity RelationsThe Sydney-born publicist behind the casting of Al Pacino in a Vittoria Coffee ad campaign has launched a company that sources Hollywood stars for Australian advertisers.

Movie publicist Emma Cooper says she will act as the go-between for Australian brand owners and celebrities such as Harrison Ford, Gwynneth Paltrow, Josh Lucas and Naomi Watts, who was a bridesmaid at Cooper’s wedding last year.

Her company, International Celebrity Relations, will operate from Los Angeles and New York.

“I received a lot of calls after the Vittoria commercial,” she said. “People were asking how we got Al Pacino. There was clearly a gap in the market.”

Australia has the opportunity to follow Japan and Germany as a popular destinations for Hollywood stars to appear in local TV commercials, Cooper noted.

“Australia is home to some great actors. But with international box office celebrities, you can open your market to a wider audience,” she said.

“A lot of people think, we won’t be able to get Hollywood actors, so we won’t bother trying. I can get an answer on availability straight away.”

With a squeeze on film production in the wake of the financial crisis, more actors are looking for commercial work and are commanding lower fees, Cooper noted.

Cooper started out as a fashion publicist at Myer, the department store chain. She got a break as a film marketer in 2000, as a publicist for Rabbit-Proof Fence. After stints at Miramax and Working Title, she moved to New York in 2006.

The Vittoria campaign is ongoing, appearing during 60 Minutes on Network Nine last night. It was the Godfather star’s first international appearance in a commercial.


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