The Advertising Standards Board (ASB) has dismissed a complaint about the sexual innuendo in the advertising campaign for adult comedy Sausage Party.
The portrait bus side advertisement features lead character, Frank (played by Seth Rogen), smiling with the text “A hero will rise”. The artwork appeared on APN Outdoor Portrait Bus Side posters nationally from Monday July 24 – Sunday August 21.
The complainant was concerned that the outdoor suggests the sausage is an erect penis, and that the sexual innuendo is not appropriate for children. The complaint said about the ad: “The sexual innuendo is offensive. I object to the way it entices children to something that is quite obviously sexually orientated.”
Check out the poster below:
A representative from Sony Pictures responded to the complaint, arguing that “the creative was produced by our US studio and has been used worldwide , including other outdoor media formats. It features the main character of the film, Frank, who is a sausage with legs and hands. In the film, Frank overcomes adversity to become a hero after learning that food items, like himself and his other grocery store friends, will be eaten once purchased by humans. Frank saves the day which explains the tagline, ‘A Hero Will Rise’.
“The advertisement is not intended to offend or inappropriately appeal to children. Children are not the intended target for the advertising campaign. The artwork makes clear it is a film for mature audiences as it carries the classification of MA15+ and consumer advice, as per Australian Classification requirements.”
The ASB agreed with Sony Pictures, ruling that although “some members of the community could find the wording of the advertisement to be a double entendre with the image of the sausage suggestive of a penis but considered that this double entendre is unlikely to be seen by many adult members of the community or by children.
“Overall the Board considered that the double entendre employed in the advertisement is not so strong as to be inappropriate and the image of the sausage in the context of the name of the movie is not inappropriate. The Board considered that the advertisement did treat the issue of sex, sexuality or nudity with sensitivity to the relevant audience which would include children.”
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