David Knight - 7th Apr 2017

After a storm of criticism, Pepsi Cola have swiftly withdrawn the ad released earlier this week featuring Kendall Jenner which turned a concept that British music video director Andrew Whiston – aka WIZ – parodied in his video for Chemical Brothers' Out Of Control back in 1999 into reality.

Now WIZ (above left, with Rosario Dawson during the Out Of Control video shoot) has commented on the ad, which ends with Jenner handing a can of Pepsi to a policeman on a political demonstration. The director, whose Chemical Brothers promo features a tense Latin American revolutionary scenario transformed into mock cola ad (below), fiercely condemns Pepsi for their use of the upsurge in popular demonstration for commercial gain.

"The original inspiration for my Chemical Brothers film came from The Clash lyric: ‘Huh, you think it’s funny turning rebellion into money’, crystallizing a deep-felt anger that when it comes to the profit margin, absolutely nothing is sacred, not even heartfelt expressions for social justice," he says. "We made this film in 1999. However today the inevitable has materialized: it’s become a self-fulfilling prophecy."

In his strongest remarks, director takes aim at the nature of advertising itself, with the Pepsi ad demonstrating the industry at its most cynical. "If you were ever in doubt about the carnivorous nature of advertising, then this Pepsi ‘spot’ says it all," he says. "It so insults everyone’s intelligence that it’s disturbing. What is this culture that we choose to live in that engenders such naked cynicism? Is advertising the pornography of capitalism?

"Vanillarizing our expressions of outrage, cashing in on the very frustrations that this system creates. Right now big business is laughing, clutching our hard earned dollar and hard earned dignity all the way to the bank. Our love, our sweat, our beauty is being sold back to us, two for the price of one.

"Yet can this travesty be a wake up call? To us all and to those in front of the camera as well as behind. No longer will we be prostitutes, no longer will we be muppets. Power to the people."

David Knight - 7th Apr 2017

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