Watchdog slams ad for Jolie film "Wanted"

Scottish actor James McAvoy poses during a photocall to present his new film 'Wanted' in Berlin June 10, 2008. REUTERS/Johannes Eisele

LONDON (Reuters) - The advertising watchdog has upheld complaints about posters advertising the film “Wanted” starring Angelina Jolie, saying they glamorised violence and gun crime.

One poster showed Jolie crouched holding a gun, while her co-star James McAvoy was also pictured brandishing guns which were directed at the reader.

Another advert, headlined “6 Weeks ago I was just like you” and with the text “And then I met her ... and my world was changed forever”, also included pictures of Jolie holding a gun, including one image in which she was firing the weapon.

The Advertising Standards Authority (ASA) said it had received 17 complaints about the posters.

The film’s makers Universal Pictures said the movie was based on a comic book and the ads reflected that style. They argued there were other ads which they believed were more graphic and less stylised than theirs.

However, the ASA ruled that the posters breached guidelines on glorifying violence and were unsuitable to be seen by children.

“We considered that because the ads featured a glamorous actress, action poses, several images of, or related to guns and aspirational text, they could be seen to glamorise the use of guns and violence,” it said in a statement.

However, the ASA did not uphold complaints that the posters were offensive because of recent public concern amongst Britons over rising gun crime.

Reporting by Michael Holden; Editing by Steve Addison