The Advertising Standards Authority has slammed a poster for the horror film Scar for being “overly graphic and shocking”.
The poster featured a close up of a screaming face with a deep knife wound across the cheek. The title, Scar, was written in spiky red text, and splashes of blood appeared beside the face.
Text at the top of the poster read “Slash-tastic killer thriller. The blood flies off the screen!” The poster was devised by The Works Media Group.
Complainants claimed the ad was offensive and irresponsible because it glorified violence and was likely to condone knife crime.
The Works Media Group said it had not intended to cause offence and had no plans to use the ad again. CBS Outdoor booked the poster and said it had received advice from the Committee of Advertising Practice before-hand that it was unlikely to be offensive.
The ASA noted that the poster appeared at tram and train stations where it could be seen by all ages and that many would find the wound and blood splashes offensive.
The ASA added that while the poster did not depict a weapon, the wound on the victim’s face and the “slash-tastic” line could be seen as a reference to knife crime.