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FilmFour screens barrage of expletives in branding push

LONDON - FilmFour is to screen a controversial ad that features the use of the most controversial swear word nine times as Channel 4's onscreen talent reveal their favourite curse words.

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The ad is part of Channel 4's "Twenty Questions" branding campaign, which features a host of the channel's celebrities such as Jamie Oliver, Jon Snow and Davina McCall responding to personal questions such as "When did you lose your virginity?" and "What angers you the most?".

Celebrities in the latest screening respond to the question: "What is your favourite swear word?".

The short promo film was originally planned to run in the cinema with the forthcoming release of Quentin Tarantino's 'Kill Bill: Volume 2'. The channel thought it would be impossible to offend an audience that had enjoyed the first instalment of the film and had returned for more. However, the Cinema Advertising Association felt differently and rejected the ad. Channel 4 is now removing references to the offending word and hopes to get it cleared by the CAA.

The unedited film will be screened on FilmFour at 10.25pm on March 15. The channel has a history of screening provocative material such as 'A Clockwork Orange', 'Ai No Corrida' and Sam Peckinpah's 'Straw Dogs'.

Bill Griffin, Channel 4's head of marketing, said: "There isn't a single person within the channel who has seen this ad and found it anything other than highly amusing. We can understand however, why the CAA felt they had to turn it down -- it does contain the highest number of expletives ever featured in an ad as far as we're aware. We're delighted to play it on the FilmFour channel and confident that it will be received by subscribers in the spirit in which it was intended."

Ofcom recently cleared the use of the word "cunt" when John Lydon used it in ITV's 'I'm a Celebrity... Get Me Out of Here!'

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