In December, we wrote about a lesbian-themed ad for Renault that had sparked controversy in Italy. At the time, the agency, Publicis in Milan, defended the commercial by saying, "We wanted to create an advert that was original, enjoyable and at the same time not vulgar." Actually, it might not be that original. AdFreak recently stumbled across a tremendously similar ad from 2006 by Israeli agency Reuveni-Pridan Ltd. for Castro dresses. In the older spot, the sapphic seduction lasts a bit longer and leads simply to a stolen dress, rather than a stolen dress and a stolen car. But otherwise the ads seem to be born from the same storyboards. When we sent Reuveni-Pridan (now owned by Interpublic Group) the Renault ad, a spokesperson sent us this reply: "They do say that imitation is the sincerest form of flattery. The close similarities in the two campaigns is obvious, and our work was broadcast back in 2006. However, in this instance, we have chosen to be flattered!" A magnanimous response indeed. Publicis Worldwide told us earlier this week that it would look into the issue but has yet to send an official response. Compare the two ads below. What's your take? Coincidence or theft?
Reuveni-Pridan, Tel Aviv, for Castro dresses (2006)
Publicis, Milan, for Renault (2010)