Dummies: Sainsbury's apologises after dressing dummy as a slave to publicise 12 Years A Slave DVDs

The mannequin was at Sainsbury's, Heyford Hill

The mannequin was at Sainsbury's, Heyford Hill

First published in News
Last updated

A SUPERMARKET apologised yesterday after a mannequin was dressed as a slave in the shop entrance to publicise a film.

Shoppers were greeted by the unusual sight yesterday morning when they entered Sainsbury’s at Heyford Hill. It was to mark the home release of Oscar-winning film 12 Years A Slave.

The mannequin was dressed in clothes similar to those worn by central character Solomon Northup, played by Chiwetel Ejiofor.

The dummy was dressed in a beige shirt with black trousers, both with rips, and had a twig in its pocket.

It was published online by Twitter user John Sargeant , who tweeted: “If you are a slave to fashion, Sainsbury’s has it covered.

“Suggest (Sainsbury’s public relations) get on to this rather quick.”

The 11.55am post was followed about an hour an a half later by a reply from Sainsbury’s.

A Sainsbury’s spokesman said: “We can only apologise.

“It’s been taken down from the Heyford Hill store and clearly should never have gone up in the first place.”

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Comments (23)

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8:45am Tue 20 May 14

jonny1976 says...

Christ, what is the world coming to.
Christ, what is the world coming to. jonny1976
  • Score: 24

9:05am Tue 20 May 14

stayingafloat says...

jonny1976 wrote:
Christ, what is the world coming to.
I totally agree. The sad and pathetic PC brigade have been at it again.
[quote][p][bold]jonny1976[/bold] wrote: Christ, what is the world coming to.[/p][/quote]I totally agree. The sad and pathetic PC brigade have been at it again. stayingafloat
  • Score: 28

10:19am Tue 20 May 14

Sandy Wimpole-Smythe says...

While I agree that whoever complained needs to get out more in the real world whoever thought up the idea at Sainsbury's is a bit of a plank.
While I agree that whoever complained needs to get out more in the real world whoever thought up the idea at Sainsbury's is a bit of a plank. Sandy Wimpole-Smythe
  • Score: -1

10:31am Tue 20 May 14

Major Rhode-Werks says...

Sandy Wimpole-Smythe wrote:
While I agree that whoever complained needs to get out more in the real world whoever thought up the idea at Sainsbury's is a bit of a plank.
Why? Have you not seen dummies used in other promotions. This is back to the "must not cause offence to anyone" thinking that quite honestly I find bloody offensive itself. Think we should now all complain to Sainsburys that we are not happy it has been removed.
[quote][p][bold]Sandy Wimpole-Smythe[/bold] wrote: While I agree that whoever complained needs to get out more in the real world whoever thought up the idea at Sainsbury's is a bit of a plank.[/p][/quote]Why? Have you not seen dummies used in other promotions. This is back to the "must not cause offence to anyone" thinking that quite honestly I find bloody offensive itself. Think we should now all complain to Sainsburys that we are not happy it has been removed. Major Rhode-Werks
  • Score: 29

10:41am Tue 20 May 14

Sandy Wimpole-Smythe says...

Major Rhode-Werks wrote:
Sandy Wimpole-Smythe wrote:
While I agree that whoever complained needs to get out more in the real world whoever thought up the idea at Sainsbury's is a bit of a plank.
Why? Have you not seen dummies used in other promotions. This is back to the "must not cause offence to anyone" thinking that quite honestly I find bloody offensive itself. Think we should now all complain to Sainsburys that we are not happy it has been removed.
To promote a film about slavery, then no I haven't, have you ? Obviously with an issue such as slavery it was going to offend someone.
[quote][p][bold]Major Rhode-Werks[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Sandy Wimpole-Smythe[/bold] wrote: While I agree that whoever complained needs to get out more in the real world whoever thought up the idea at Sainsbury's is a bit of a plank.[/p][/quote]Why? Have you not seen dummies used in other promotions. This is back to the "must not cause offence to anyone" thinking that quite honestly I find bloody offensive itself. Think we should now all complain to Sainsburys that we are not happy it has been removed.[/p][/quote]To promote a film about slavery, then no I haven't, have you ? Obviously with an issue such as slavery it was going to offend someone. Sandy Wimpole-Smythe
  • Score: -10

11:47am Tue 20 May 14

Major Rhode-Werks says...

Sandy Wimpole-Smythe wrote:
Major Rhode-Werks wrote:
Sandy Wimpole-Smythe wrote:
While I agree that whoever complained needs to get out more in the real world whoever thought up the idea at Sainsbury's is a bit of a plank.
Why? Have you not seen dummies used in other promotions. This is back to the "must not cause offence to anyone" thinking that quite honestly I find bloody offensive itself. Think we should now all complain to Sainsburys that we are not happy it has been removed.
To promote a film about slavery, then no I haven't, have you ? Obviously with an issue such as slavery it was going to offend someone.
These days it seems that everything offends somebody - gone are the days, it seems, when everyone just got on with living their life. Personally I can't understand how anyone could find a dressed-up mannequin offensive even if it is promoting a DVD about slavery but if they do they must really find the film itself (and the awards it won) very offensive? I expect the mannequin was removed because of one Twitter comment, I doubt anyone actually complained, so a total overreaction by Sainsburys I think.
[quote][p][bold]Sandy Wimpole-Smythe[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Major Rhode-Werks[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Sandy Wimpole-Smythe[/bold] wrote: While I agree that whoever complained needs to get out more in the real world whoever thought up the idea at Sainsbury's is a bit of a plank.[/p][/quote]Why? Have you not seen dummies used in other promotions. This is back to the "must not cause offence to anyone" thinking that quite honestly I find bloody offensive itself. Think we should now all complain to Sainsburys that we are not happy it has been removed.[/p][/quote]To promote a film about slavery, then no I haven't, have you ? Obviously with an issue such as slavery it was going to offend someone.[/p][/quote]These days it seems that everything offends somebody - gone are the days, it seems, when everyone just got on with living their life. Personally I can't understand how anyone could find a dressed-up mannequin offensive even if it is promoting a DVD about slavery but if they do they must really find the film itself (and the awards it won) very offensive? I expect the mannequin was removed because of one Twitter comment, I doubt anyone actually complained, so a total overreaction by Sainsburys I think. Major Rhode-Werks
  • Score: 21

12:02pm Tue 20 May 14

Myron Blatz says...

What next - making workers wear uniforms by Law, or does Health & Safety already do that, perhaps - are you fully-compliant with safety regs, while reading this, and do you wear a crash-helmet when using your tablet or smartphone?
What next - making workers wear uniforms by Law, or does Health & Safety already do that, perhaps - are you fully-compliant with safety regs, while reading this, and do you wear a crash-helmet when using your tablet or smartphone? Myron Blatz
  • Score: -2

12:33pm Tue 20 May 14

King Joke says...

I presume you'd all be happy with a mannequin in a stripey uniform being used to promote Schindler's List, or one dressed as an injured British soldier to promote Bravo Two Zero?
I presume you'd all be happy with a mannequin in a stripey uniform being used to promote Schindler's List, or one dressed as an injured British soldier to promote Bravo Two Zero? King Joke
  • Score: -5

12:47pm Tue 20 May 14

Major Rhode-Werks says...

King Joke wrote:
I presume you'd all be happy with a mannequin in a stripey uniform being used to promote Schindler's List, or one dressed as an injured British soldier to promote Bravo Two Zero?
In a word - Yes. Why not. How about a pirate to promote Pirates of the Caribbean - offended? What's the difference, pirates were just as real even if the films weren't based on facts as the other two you mention.
[quote][p][bold]King Joke[/bold] wrote: I presume you'd all be happy with a mannequin in a stripey uniform being used to promote Schindler's List, or one dressed as an injured British soldier to promote Bravo Two Zero?[/p][/quote]In a word - Yes. Why not. How about a pirate to promote Pirates of the Caribbean - offended? What's the difference, pirates were just as real even if the films weren't based on facts as the other two you mention. Major Rhode-Werks
  • Score: 10

5:58pm Tue 20 May 14

Dilligaf2010 says...

It's an awesome film, based on a true story.
It features some very graphic violence...which had me flinching, but it goes to show how badly slaves were treated, and by the end of it, I had a greater hatred for some humans, than I did before.
It beggars belief that slavery was common practice for so long, and if the mannequin convinced even one person to buy the film, then it served its purpose.
It's an awesome film, based on a true story. It features some very graphic violence...which had me flinching, but it goes to show how badly slaves were treated, and by the end of it, I had a greater hatred for some humans, than I did before. It beggars belief that slavery was common practice for so long, and if the mannequin convinced even one person to buy the film, then it served its purpose. Dilligaf2010
  • Score: 3

6:08pm Tue 20 May 14

Dilligaf2010 says...

What's even more pathetic, is the fact that the mannequin was white.......
How can somebody be offended by a white dummy wearing a torn shirt and trousers?
What's even more pathetic, is the fact that the mannequin was white....... How can somebody be offended by a white dummy wearing a torn shirt and trousers? Dilligaf2010
  • Score: 4

6:57pm Tue 20 May 14

cheese&beans says...

Life is meant to be fun......stop getting upset with trivial things.
Life is meant to be fun......stop getting upset with trivial things. cheese&beans
  • Score: 2

8:27pm Tue 20 May 14

King Joke says...

Major Rhode-Werks wrote:
King Joke wrote:
I presume you'd all be happy with a mannequin in a stripey uniform being used to promote Schindler's List, or one dressed as an injured British soldier to promote Bravo Two Zero?
In a word - Yes. Why not. How about a pirate to promote Pirates of the Caribbean - offended? What's the difference, pirates were just as real even if the films weren't based on facts as the other two you mention.
Piracy is no laughing matter - as anyone who sails around Somalia will attest - and wasn't in the past either. Pirates of the Carribean however is so far removed from reality, and portrayed as high-camp comedy, as to not be associated with the horrors which occurred.

The reason this display is tasteless is because it trivialises the subject matter. This is a serious film about a serious subject and should be treated with sensitivity.
[quote][p][bold]Major Rhode-Werks[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]King Joke[/bold] wrote: I presume you'd all be happy with a mannequin in a stripey uniform being used to promote Schindler's List, or one dressed as an injured British soldier to promote Bravo Two Zero?[/p][/quote]In a word - Yes. Why not. How about a pirate to promote Pirates of the Caribbean - offended? What's the difference, pirates were just as real even if the films weren't based on facts as the other two you mention.[/p][/quote]Piracy is no laughing matter - as anyone who sails around Somalia will attest - and wasn't in the past either. Pirates of the Carribean however is so far removed from reality, and portrayed as high-camp comedy, as to not be associated with the horrors which occurred. The reason this display is tasteless is because it trivialises the subject matter. This is a serious film about a serious subject and should be treated with sensitivity. King Joke
  • Score: -6

8:38pm Tue 20 May 14

Jameslouis says...

What the hell are you apologising to these people for its our country if the Politically correct Cowards or Bullies do not like it to bad if they do not like it catch the next train abroad and don't come back, it's our country and you will never stop us doing or saying things, end of story
What the hell are you apologising to these people for its our country if the Politically correct Cowards or Bullies do not like it to bad if they do not like it catch the next train abroad and don't come back, it's our country and you will never stop us doing or saying things, end of story Jameslouis
  • Score: -1

7:24am Wed 21 May 14

stayingafloat says...

Jameslouis wrote:
What the hell are you apologising to these people for its our country if the Politically correct Cowards or Bullies do not like it to bad if they do not like it catch the next train abroad and don't come back, it's our country and you will never stop us doing or saying things, end of story
Nice one. Plus you can also use your Nectar card or is that offensive to bees?
[quote][p][bold]Jameslouis[/bold] wrote: What the hell are you apologising to these people for its our country if the Politically correct Cowards or Bullies do not like it to bad if they do not like it catch the next train abroad and don't come back, it's our country and you will never stop us doing or saying things, end of story[/p][/quote]Nice one. Plus you can also use your Nectar card or is that offensive to bees? stayingafloat
  • Score: 1

7:39am Wed 21 May 14

King Joke says...

stayingafloat wrote:
Jameslouis wrote:
What the hell are you apologising to these people for its our country if the Politically correct Cowards or Bullies do not like it to bad if they do not like it catch the next train abroad and don't come back, it's our country and you will never stop us doing or saying things, end of story
Nice one. Plus you can also use your Nectar card or is that offensive to bees?
Go where and don't come back? Plenty of white, British, 'indigenous' etc people find trivialisation of slavery offensive.

By the way who are Politically, Cowards and Bullies? I presume these are names as you've capitalised them. 'Our country' has a language with a pretty simple set of grammatical rules, if you don't like them maybe you should live elsewhere? They capitalise all nouns in Germany, you'd like it there.
[quote][p][bold]stayingafloat[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Jameslouis[/bold] wrote: What the hell are you apologising to these people for its our country if the Politically correct Cowards or Bullies do not like it to bad if they do not like it catch the next train abroad and don't come back, it's our country and you will never stop us doing or saying things, end of story[/p][/quote]Nice one. Plus you can also use your Nectar card or is that offensive to bees?[/p][/quote]Go where and don't come back? Plenty of white, British, 'indigenous' etc people find trivialisation of slavery offensive. By the way who are Politically, Cowards and Bullies? I presume these are names as you've capitalised them. 'Our country' has a language with a pretty simple set of grammatical rules, if you don't like them maybe you should live elsewhere? They capitalise all nouns in Germany, you'd like it there. King Joke
  • Score: 1

10:08am Wed 21 May 14

Major Rhode-Werks says...

King Joke wrote:
stayingafloat wrote:
Jameslouis wrote:
What the hell are you apologising to these people for its our country if the Politically correct Cowards or Bullies do not like it to bad if they do not like it catch the next train abroad and don't come back, it's our country and you will never stop us doing or saying things, end of story
Nice one. Plus you can also use your Nectar card or is that offensive to bees?
Go where and don't come back? Plenty of white, British, 'indigenous' etc people find trivialisation of slavery offensive.

By the way who are Politically, Cowards and Bullies? I presume these are names as you've capitalised them. 'Our country' has a language with a pretty simple set of grammatical rules, if you don't like them maybe you should live elsewhere? They capitalise all nouns in Germany, you'd like it there.
Don't mock the afflicted KJ - perhaps he didn't have the education that you and I had. Or maybe he just didn't listen or take it in.
[quote][p][bold]King Joke[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]stayingafloat[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Jameslouis[/bold] wrote: What the hell are you apologising to these people for its our country if the Politically correct Cowards or Bullies do not like it to bad if they do not like it catch the next train abroad and don't come back, it's our country and you will never stop us doing or saying things, end of story[/p][/quote]Nice one. Plus you can also use your Nectar card or is that offensive to bees?[/p][/quote]Go where and don't come back? Plenty of white, British, 'indigenous' etc people find trivialisation of slavery offensive. By the way who are Politically, Cowards and Bullies? I presume these are names as you've capitalised them. 'Our country' has a language with a pretty simple set of grammatical rules, if you don't like them maybe you should live elsewhere? They capitalise all nouns in Germany, you'd like it there.[/p][/quote]Don't mock the afflicted KJ - perhaps he didn't have the education that you and I had. Or maybe he just didn't listen or take it in. Major Rhode-Werks
  • Score: 2

10:21am Wed 21 May 14

King Joke says...

There was nothing special about my comprehensive school, then red-brick uni education. I do read books and newspapers though, and as you suggest MRW, I did take it in when elementary grammar rules were explained to me at school. I also love my country and its language, although I understand that some people are less bothered.
There was nothing special about my comprehensive school, then red-brick uni education. I do read books and newspapers though, and as you suggest MRW, I did take it in when elementary grammar rules were explained to me at school. I also love my country and its language, although I understand that some people are less bothered. King Joke
  • Score: -1

10:28am Wed 21 May 14

Major Rhode-Werks says...

King Joke wrote:
There was nothing special about my comprehensive school, then red-brick uni education. I do read books and newspapers though, and as you suggest MRW, I did take it in when elementary grammar rules were explained to me at school. I also love my country and its language, although I understand that some people are less bothered.
At last - something we have in common and something we agree on!!
[quote][p][bold]King Joke[/bold] wrote: There was nothing special about my comprehensive school, then red-brick uni education. I do read books and newspapers though, and as you suggest MRW, I did take it in when elementary grammar rules were explained to me at school. I also love my country and its language, although I understand that some people are less bothered.[/p][/quote]At last - something we have in common and something we agree on!! Major Rhode-Werks
  • Score: -2

9:47pm Wed 21 May 14

Major Rhode-Werks says...

deedee444 wrote:
Get a room you 2 condescending ponces..........
Calm down, I was telling lies anyway. Secondry modern and starting work at age 15 well before comprehensives came about, that was me. Mind you, can't beat a bit of a wind-up can you.
[quote][p][bold]deedee444[/bold] wrote: Get a room you 2 condescending ponces..........[/p][/quote]Calm down, I was telling lies anyway. Secondry modern and starting work at age 15 well before comprehensives came about, that was me. Mind you, can't beat a bit of a wind-up can you. Major Rhode-Werks
  • Score: 0

7:10pm Sat 24 May 14

Chriso123 says...

Good job they didn't see the picture of the black slave next to the mannequin.
Good job they didn't see the picture of the black slave next to the mannequin. Chriso123
  • Score: 1

2:30am Sun 25 May 14

The New Private Eye says...

King Joke wrote:
Major Rhode-Werks wrote:
King Joke wrote:
I presume you'd all be happy with a mannequin in a stripey uniform being used to promote Schindler's List, or one dressed as an injured British soldier to promote Bravo Two Zero?
In a word - Yes. Why not. How about a pirate to promote Pirates of the Caribbean - offended? What's the difference, pirates were just as real even if the films weren't based on facts as the other two you mention.
Piracy is no laughing matter - as anyone who sails around Somalia will attest - and wasn't in the past either. Pirates of the Carribean however is so far removed from reality, and portrayed as high-camp comedy, as to not be associated with the horrors which occurred.

The reason this display is tasteless is because it trivialises the subject matter. This is a serious film about a serious subject and should be treated with sensitivity.
Sorry mate you are wrong. If you are so offended at the portrayal of a slave to advertise a film about a slave, then you should get out more.
[quote][p][bold]King Joke[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Major Rhode-Werks[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]King Joke[/bold] wrote: I presume you'd all be happy with a mannequin in a stripey uniform being used to promote Schindler's List, or one dressed as an injured British soldier to promote Bravo Two Zero?[/p][/quote]In a word - Yes. Why not. How about a pirate to promote Pirates of the Caribbean - offended? What's the difference, pirates were just as real even if the films weren't based on facts as the other two you mention.[/p][/quote]Piracy is no laughing matter - as anyone who sails around Somalia will attest - and wasn't in the past either. Pirates of the Carribean however is so far removed from reality, and portrayed as high-camp comedy, as to not be associated with the horrors which occurred. The reason this display is tasteless is because it trivialises the subject matter. This is a serious film about a serious subject and should be treated with sensitivity.[/p][/quote]Sorry mate you are wrong. If you are so offended at the portrayal of a slave to advertise a film about a slave, then you should get out more. The New Private Eye
  • Score: 3

9:58pm Mon 26 May 14

King Joke says...

THere's a difference between 'portrayal' and 'trivialising' and in this instance the Sainsbury's staff were the wrong side of the line.
THere's a difference between 'portrayal' and 'trivialising' and in this instance the Sainsbury's staff were the wrong side of the line. King Joke
  • Score: 1

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