Latest Newsletter🍵 New alcohol/cancer study in AsiansRead


Australian Man Will Do Whatever it Takes to Become Famous in Japan

    Asian America Daily - in under 5 minutes

    Get our collection of Asian America's most essential stories, to your inbox daily, for free!

    Unsure? Check out our Newsletter Archive

    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.

    American Bob “The Beast” Sapp
    Canadian Kelsey Parnigoni
    Australian Rick “Ladybeard” Magarey

    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.”

    Check out the official trailer below:

    Support our Journalism with a Contribution

    Many people might not know this, but despite our large and loyal following which we are immensely grateful for, NextShark is still a small bootstrapped startup that runs on no outside funding or loans.

    Everything you see today is built on the backs of warriors who have sacrificed opportunities to help give Asians all over the world a bigger voice.

    However, we still face many trials and tribulations in our industry, from figuring out the most sustainable business model for independent media companies to facing the current COVID-19 pandemic decimating advertising revenues across the board.

    We hope you consider making a contribution so we can continue to provide you with quality content that informs, educates and inspires the Asian community. Even a $1 contribution goes a long way.  Thank you for everyone's support. We love you all and can't appreciate you guys enough.

    Support NextShark

    Mastercard, Visa, Amex, Discover, Paypal