The fag end

Published: Tuesday 31 March 2009

Angry at Warner Brothers over images of cigarettes in the comedy He's Just Not That Into You, an arm of the American Medical Association is demanding that the studio step up policing of tobacco images on screen. The association is chaffed at the "images of specific cigarette brands in this youth-rated movie."

Among other things, the group wants Warner publicly to certify that it received no payment for the product placement and is asking all Hollywood studios to ban filmmakers from showing specific tobacco brands in their work. "There is zero artistic justification for this," Melissa Walthers of the medical association said. The film which has garnered more than US $100 million in tickets worldwide since its release in early February does not depict anyone smoking, and there is a prominent story line placing cigarettes in a negative light. But there are shots of Natural American Spirit Lights in the movie, identifiable by their bright yellow box.

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