Lenovo is turning to actor Ashton Kutcher, fresh off a film on Apple co-founder Steve Jobs, amid the company's efforts to boost its brand as it expands from computers into smartphones and tablets.
Kutcher would join Lenovo for a product announcement to be streamed live on Google's YouTube next Wednesday, Lenovo said yesterday. A web page set up by the company for the event contains three videos suggesting the announcement may pertain to a new tablet computer, or a better way to grip or power such devices.
Lenovo tapped basketball player Kobe Bryant of the Los Angeles Lakers in May to promote its smartphones. Lenovo is the latest Asian hardware maker to look to Hollywood for a boost, after HTC began running advertisements featuring Robert Downey Jr, who starred as Iron Man and Sherlock Holmes in hit movies, in August. Downey's two-year global marketing deal was worth about US$12 million, two sources said in June.
Kutcher, who stars on the television show Two and a Half Men, has more than 15 million followers of his Twitter microblog, and had the title role in Jobs, a biopic on Apple's co-founder released in August.
Lenovo spokesman Brion Tingler declined to comment beyond the text of the invitation that describes the event as Lenovo's "most exciting product announcement to date".