Ken Leighton 7:59 a.m., May 22
Budweiser: The beer that made Zemeckis grimace
I betcha' Denzel Washington wishes he had a Schlitz in his latest, the "don't drink and fly drama," Flight.
Budweiser is miffed that their beer is being portrayed in a manner that implies one can actually get drunk by consuming the product.
Budweiser, the King of Beers has asked Paramount Pictures, the King of Studios, to blur all traces of the Bud brand "in current digital copies of the movie and on all subsequent adaptations of the film, including DVD, On Demand, streaming and additional prints not yet distributed to theaters.”
The film includes scenes of Washington throwing back a few Buds as well as other brand name alcoholic beverages.
Robert McCarthy, VP at Anheuser-Busch, brewer of Bud, fired off a letter to Paramount and Robert Zemeckis' Image Movers. “We would never condone the misuse of our products," McCarthy wrote, "and have a long history of promoting responsible drinking and preventing drunk driving. It is disappointing that Image Movers, the production company, and Paramount chose to use one of our brands in this manner.”
Deadline reports, "According to the Associated Press, experts say Flight is unlikely to run afoul of trademark protections, as courts have ruled products can be featured in films regardless of whether the companies approve, as long as their appearance is artistically relevant."
Mr. L covered The Days of Wine and Tailwinds for The Big Screen.