Controversial anti-abortion advert pulled from cinemas

Message was pulled after a host of complaints from filmgoers this past week

An anti-abortion advertisement has generated so many complaints from cinema goers that cinema advert distributors Dansk Reklame Film (DRF) has decided to pull it from the silver screen.

Entitled 'Abort gør dig ked af det' (’Abortion makes you sad’), the ad depicts a naked woman lying in foetal position with her eyes closed. In the background, a beating heart can be heard and a woman’s voice says “Yes, you can remove your child, but is it really what you want? You will always remember the little heart that beat inside you. Your child's.”

DRF said that it had pulled the advert (see it below) due to an influx of consumer complaints.

“You must remember that the exposure situation in cinemas is unique. The public does not have the same option to deselect the adverts as they do in other media,” Claus Brix, the head of DRF, told TV2 News. “Because of the controversial subject and the complaints, we have evaluated that it shouldn’t have been shown in the first place.”

16,000 crosses along highway E45
The advert is produced by, an organisation associated with the anti-abortion association Retten til Liv, which gained a fair share of notoriety recently after it put up 16,000 white crosses along the E45 highway between Horsens and Vejle to mark the 40-year anniversary of legal abortion in Denmark.

The crosses, which depicted the number of abortions performed each year in Denmark, were deemed a traffic hazard by the traffic authorities and removed.

Abortlinien does not understand why the advert has been pulled from cinemas.

“This is an advert which reaches out to women who are in a difficult situation and need a helping hand concerning guidance, care and a listening ear,” Roland Knudsen, the head of Abortlinien, told TV2 News. “There are only positive things about it and we don’t understand why we are not permitted to do this.”

Knudsen acknowledged that the advert was dramatic and could offend some people.

“There are many people who get an abortion and then regret it afterwards and I think it is particularly those people who are offended,” Knudsen said. “Some old wounds are opened, but it is only good to talk about things that people have lived with for many years.”

Based on guilt and shame
But the equality minister, Manu Sareen (Radikale), argued that the controversial advert was “problematic”.

“It’s an issue that is fuelled with guilt and shame, particularly since we have fought for legal abortion for so many years,” Sareen told Berlingske newspaper. “Basically it’s about the right to decide over one’s own body. That’s what’s what we fight for when we speak of equality.”

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