Crocodile Dundee tourism ad airs at Super Bowl in US

Paul Hogan starring in a Crocodile Dundee inspired TV commercial that aired during the 2018 Super Bowl. Photo: Tourism Australia
Paul Hogan starring in a Crocodile Dundee inspired TV commercial that aired during the 2018 Super Bowl. Photo: Tourism Australia

A new, star-studded Crocodile Dundee-inspired TV commercial has aired for a potential 110 million Super Bowl viewers in the US as part of a record $US27 million ($38 million) Tourism Australia campaign targeting US travellers.

It is the federal government's most ambitious and expensive tourism campaign for a single overseas market.

Most advertisers paid US TV network NBC about $US5 million for a single 30-second slot in Sunday's clash between the New England Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles.

However, Tourism Australia negotiated a two-year $A15 million deal with NBC for the Super Bowl spot and other opportunities, using NBC's vast platform.

The Dundee: The Son of a Legend Returns Home ads, starring Chris Hemsworth, Hugh Jackman, Margot Robbie and other Australian A-Listers, are the central plank of Tourism Australia's campaign designed to make Australia the most desired destination to visit among US travellers by 2020.

The new Super Bowl ad is a continuation of faux trailers that have emerged online in recent weeks to make it appear that a Crocodile Dundee film sequel would soon land in cinemas.

The Super Bowl ad features a humorous appearance by the original Crocodile Dundee Paul Hogan, who also headed Australia's successful "shrimp on the barbie" tourism ads of the 1980s.

Australia's Minister for Trade, Tourism and Investment, Steven Ciobo, is confident the investment will pay off.

"Creative ideas such as this are what we need to captivate our key target audiences," Mr Ciobo said.

"I am confident that many Americans are looking at booking their next holiday to Australia right now."


Russell Crowe, Ruby Rose, Liam Hemsworth, Isla Fisher, Luke Bracey and Jessica Mauboy also appear in the ads and faux trailers.

The Super Bowl is by far the biggest TV broadcast in the US each year with last year's drawing 111.3 million viewers.

Tourism Australia said the campaign, before the Super Bowl ad aired, already had a social media reach of 412 million people, the faux trailers were viewed 68.8 million times and were double the number of any other Super Bowl ads online.

US comedic actor Danny McBride plays the central role in the ads as Dundee's long-lost doofus son returning to the outback to save his dad.

In the Super Bowl ad, Hemsworth takes McBride to see "37,000 miles of pristine beach, mate" and taste "some of the finest wines in the entire world".

As they sit at a Sydney harbourside restaurant, it finally clicks with McBride he is in a tourism commercial and won't be the star of a Crocodile Dundee film.

"Yes, but listen," Hemsworth, trying to calm McBride, says.

"You're the best Crocodile Dundee since Crocodile Dundee."

The camera then crosses to a disapproving Hogan sitting at the bar holding a schooner of beer.

Hogan, in the meantime, has settled a legal dispute with Grill'd when he sought to stop the burger chain from using a version of the classic line, "That's not a knife, THAT's a knife" in December last year.

Instead of suing the company for damages, Hogan has settled for Grill'd paying $10,000 to Cure Cancer Australia's BARBECURE campaign.

As the BARBECURE campaign's lead ambassador, Hogan said: "We've all lost a friend or a family member to cancer and it's one of the leading causes of death in Australia. As we get closer to finding a cure, we need to do everything we can to support Australia's brilliant emerging scientists."

AAP, with Aja Styles