I don't know about the specific case of Tokyo ESP, but it's far from uncommon for anime to have references to American popular culture. For example, there was Nerima Daikon Brothers, which was vaguely influenced by The Blues Brothers and contained the weird Michael Jackson parody Yukel Hakushon. Excel Saga and Magical Shopping Arcade Abenobashi were also full of them. The Cowboy Bebop episode "Toys in the Attic" was a parody of the Alien movies. The Yuru Yuri manga included a weird scene where Kyouko imagines a Hollywood movie of Yuru Yuri where everyone carries a gun. Hellsing included its bizarre "Willis" dream that references Bruce Willis.
Japan receives a good portion of our pop culture. If you look at this list of highest-grossing films in Japan, you'll notice that it's about an even split between Japanese and US productions, and that Titanic, Frozen, Harry Potter, and Avatar are all in the top ten. Japanese voice actors often do both anime and dubs of American films; check out this list of dub roles by Akio Otsuka, who plays Rider in Fate/Zero. Even movies that many of us Americans would rather no one ever saw, like Con Air and the entire filmography of Steven Seagal, are in that list.
So the author of Tokyo ESP was just making reference to well-known movies, for the same reasons any author might.