Convinced that the country he loves will love him back, an Australian man has dedicated his “entire life” to pursue fame in Japan.
David Elliot-Jones isn’t exactly the first person you’d pick for a foreign celebrity in Tokyo.
But wait until he plays Mr. Jones and Onigiri Man — you might change your mind.
See, Jones is determined to make it “Big in Japan”, and that’s exactly the title of his new documentary showing early next year.
Jones went to Tokyo several years ago to start his mission of understanding fame by attempting to become famous himself.
He’s curious about how foreigners such as Bob “The Beast” Sapp (TV personality), Kelsey Parnigoni (J-Pop star wannabe) and Rick “Ladybeard” Magarey (crossdresser sensation) made it big in the country.
“I stumbled across these videos of foreigners who were clearly big names over there but we hadn’t heard of them,” he told ABC.
In his quest for fame, Jones first sought help from a foreign talent agency that basically groom future stars. He registered and had his photos professionally taken.
“We found that it was quite easy because I had a particular look, I looked quite nerdy. Once we cottoned on to that we ran with it a bit and made me into a super nerd.”
And super nerd he became — Jones debuted as a character called Mr. Jones (“Jonesu”), awkward glasses and all.
After setting up a YouTube channel, Jones, together with friends and other documentary makers Lachlan McLeod and Louis Dai, started working on more videos.
In the process, Jones had to go through Japanese lessons, while the team paid to have his scripts professionally translated.
So far, they’ve produced over 30 videos, featuring Jones’s characters and other foreign celebrities in Japan.
While Jones appears thirsty AF for fame, the reality that it’s all one social experiment casts our anxieties away. In essence, “Big in Japan” is a dissection on the definition of fame, why people want it and how an average person — Jones, that is — can achieve it.
“With fame we tend to look at it as either something we want or we don’t want. But we found it was a lot more nuanced than that, and it’s an extension of something quite human.”
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