An ad heard on Spotify promoted the cinema release of the film Taken 2. The ad stated "'Eat your heart out 007', says the Daily Star, 'ten out of ten'".
The complainant challenged whether the reference in the ad to the Daily Star's review of Taken 2 was misleading and could be substantiated, because they understood that the "ten out of ten" rating and the words "Eat your heart out 007" were not part of the Daily Star's review of that film.
Twentieth Century Fox Film Company Ltd (Twentieth Century Fox) responded that a reviewer from the Daily Star had given them permission to use the quote "Eat your heart out 007 - 10/10" in their marketing material for Taken 2. They provided a copy of an e-mail which they said was from the Daily Star reviewer and demonstrated that he had approved their use of the quote. They explained that they often received quotes before the relevant reviews were run and had not been aware that on this occasion the published review had not contained the quote. However, they stated that, because the quote had originated from and been approved by the Daily Star reviewer, they were satisfied that it was a fair and accurate portrayal of his opinion of the film.
The ASA acknowledged Twentieth Century Fox's argument that the quote had been approved by the Daily Star reviewer and that therefore its use in the ad was not misleading, even though it had not featured in the published review. We noted, however, that the e-mail approving the use of the quote "Eat your heart out 007 - 10/10" did not appear to have come from the same person who had written the published Daily Star review for Taken 2. In addition, we considered that the average listener would understand from the phrase "'Eat your heart out 007', says the Daily Star, 'ten out of ten'" that the quote had been made in a published Daily Star review. Because we understood that that was not the case, we concluded that the reference in the ad to the Daily Star's review of Taken 2 was misleading.
The ad breached CAP Code (Edition 12) rules 3.1 3.1 Marketing communications must not materially mislead or be likely to do so. (Misleading advertising), 3.7 3.7 Before distributing or submitting a marketing communication for publication, marketers must hold documentary evidence to prove claims that consumers are likely to regard as objective and that are capable of objective substantiation. The ASA may regard claims as misleading in the absence of adequate substantiation. (Substantiation) and 3.45 3.45 Marketers must hold documentary evidence that a testimonial or endorsement used in a marketing communication is genuine, unless it is obviously fictitious, and hold contact details for the person who, or organisation that, gives it. and 3.46 3.46 Testimonials must relate to the advertised product. (Endorsements and testimonials).
The ad must not appear again in its current form.