Saatchi rejects satanic text claims in Toyota Verso ad

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PARIS--Saatchi & Saatchi, Paris has refuted allegations in France that its TV spot for Toyota's Yaris Verso car, contains any subliminal satanic images or text.

Earlier, French daily Le Parisien published claims that the 30-second spot, if seen in slow motion, evoked Satanic images and texts.

Saatchi's response was to bring together a panel of 11 people representing advertisers, the government and religious, family and anti-sect organizations, to comb the 750 frames in the spot. Following the session, the agency concluded that the ad did not contain subliminal images.

The offending commercial shown exclusively in France since Nov. 29, features a husband jumping out of bed and into his car to meet his pregnant wife at a hospital maternity ward.

Toyota is Saatchi's second biggest international client after Procter & Gamble Co.

Copyright December 1999, Crain Communications Inc.

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