Victoria Beckham is a 43-year-old businesswoman, fashion designer, model, and singer. Her likeness is used to sell a wide variety of products including jewelry, nail kits, clothes, and even deodorant. When a pizza company used her as their muse for a recent ad, however, Beckham drew the line.
A pizzeria in North East England created a cartoon ad for their thin crust pizza, claiming that it is thinner than Victoria Beckham. The ad features a cartoon image of an “anorexic” model wearing an “Anorexic Fashion Icon” sash.
The ad appears on the back of the restaurant’s delivery vans and mocks Beckham for her size. The words “this is not thin” are pointing to Beckham, while the pizza accompanies the words “this is thin.”
The manager of the eatery, Soni Sidhu, said that the ad was created three years ago. He claimed that there have not been any negative comments about the ad until now.
He said, “There hasn’t been one negative email or one negative kind of response from anybody at all. It’s not intended to kind of offend anybody.”
Although the intentions may not have been to offend, the result is just that. A spokesperson for Beckham has revealed that the former Spice Girl is seeking legal advice and that a lawsuit may follow.
The spokesperson told Fox News, “It is highly inappropriate to trivialize such a disorder, and defamatory to be so thoughtless with a person’s reputation in this way, therefore we are seeking legal advice.”
Marg Oaten, a representative from an anorexia charity organization, said, “This is a step in the wrong direction. The people responsible for this should hang their heads in shame. The advert puts people at genuine risk. Those who suffer from eating disorders are constantly battling with their feelings and thoughts. They will see the advert and start comparing themselves to the size of Victoria Beckham.”
Since the media got a hold of the controversial ad, the manager has issued a half-hearted apology.
He said, “As the manager and on behalf of all our staff and owners I would like to state we recognize how serious eating disorders are and would never make light the seriousness of people with eating disorders. It is offered as a fun way to make people smile, and to escape from the daily hustle and bustle of life. We would be genuinely horrified if anyone was genuinely offended.”
He later stated he would be upset if he had to remove the ad because it would interfere with freedom of expression.
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