Ronald McDonald and Grimace have a new friend: Justin Timberlake. In what the fast-food chain is calling the first global marketing effort in its 50-year history, Timberlake will appear in McDonald's commercials that will air in several countries, singing ''I'm Lovin' It,'' the restaurant's new pop/hip-hop-style jingle. The U.S. version of the campaign debuts Sept. 29.
The New York Times reports that the deal will be worth $6 million to the singer, though it's not clear if that figure includes sponsorship costs on his upcoming 35-country tour, some of which McDonald's will underwrite. In a statement, Timberlake said of McDonald's, ''We share the same crowd -- people who like to have fun.''
This isn't Timberlake's first McDonald's endorsement deal. In 2000, when he was still dating Britney Spears, she and 'N Sync appeared together in a McDonald's ad, playing spin the bottle. Hmm, so is that where the two of them had their first, uh, Big Mac Attack?