Woolworths was embarrassed and “surprised” by obscenities and derogatory comments attributed to the actor Paul Kaye by a newspaper, concerning his role fronting the retailer’s new &£20m marketing campaign.
Kaye, better known as Dennis Pennis, was giving an interview to The Guardian’s The Guide magazine about his new BBC 2 quiz show The Liar, when he reportedly said: “I’ve just done an advert for Woolies. What a cunt. I’ll have to hide from the telly for six months.”
Kaye’s words could have jeopardised the retailer’s latest campaign, in which he plays a young father called Dave who uses Woolworths for all his shopping needs.
A spokeswoman for Woolworths says: “We were very surprised by the article and some of the expressions reported in it. Paul Kaye’s agent assures us he was misunderstood and he has assured us that such a misunderstanding will not happen again.”
But the spokeswoman has made it clear that Woolworths is prepared to draw a line under the matter.
Woolworths had planned to use Dave as the lead character in a series of ads, including its Christmas campaign.