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Clooney in 'heaven' ad row

Lavazza to appeal to watchdog over Nespresso spot

10 December, 17:07
Clooney in 'heaven' ad row (ANSA) - Turin, December 10 - George Clooney is at the centre of a coffee advertising row in Italy over a new campaign where he visits heaven.

Italian firm Lavazza, which has been running award-winning heaven-set commercials for 15 years, is threatening to report Nespresso, the Swiss-based firm whose coffeemakers have been popularised by the Hollywood star.

In the new ad, Clooney is hit by a piano and goes to heaven only to be sent back to earth after John Malkovich, as God, takes a shine to the Nespresso machine Clooney is carrying.

One scene with the two stars sitting on a sofa amid swirling white smoke appears to echo the Lavazza ads fronted by Italian TV personality Paolo Bonolis.

"It's weird, I've never seen anything like it in my 40 years in the industry," Lavazza CEO Gaetano Mele said Thursday.

"It's hard to believe they haven't copied us. It's all the same, the setting is identical and the idea of coffee in Paradise".

Mele said he was confident Nespresso would realise its "mistake" and pull the ad but if it didn't Lavazza would appeal to Italy's advertising watchdog.

"Let's hope it won't get that far," he said.

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