Spotify Banned An Ad With Camila Cabello's 'Havana' Because It Was Too Scary
It's October, the month that is best known for Halloween-related activities. Getting scared comes with the seasonal territory. 'Tis the season, as it were. But Spotify might've gone a bit too far, at least when it came -- weirdly enough -- to an ad centered around Camila Cabello's hit single, "Havana." The streaming service saw an ad featuring the popular single banned, as the commercial was deemed too frightening. Here's what we know about the peculiar turns of events involving Cabello and a creepy doll.
An ad for Spotify centered around Camila Cabello's record-topping single was taken off of TVs in the U.K. after it was considered "too scary." The commercial, which centers around a couple and several other young people being terrorized by a very peculiar demonic presence every time they listen to Cabello's famous tune, was meant to celebrate "killer songs you can't resist" available on Spotify. Television audiences in the U.K., however, weren't amused by the antics portrayed in the intentionally unsettling one-minute ad.
Per Billboard, specifically, the country's Advertising Standards Authority considered the commercial to be "distressing and too scary" to be broadcast on television. While that would technically make the commercial a success, as it wasn't meant to be, you know, un-scary, the ASA ultimately felt it wasn't suitable for television and decided it needed to be removed from the nation's telecasts. In our Internet age, that does draw the commercial more attention, particularly if it has a reputation for being "too scary" to be on television. In that sense, it's ultimately a successful commercial for Spotify's services.
If you are willing to watch the Spotify ad that was considered too scary for its own good, check out the commercial below. Be warned: it is a little spooky.
Meanwhile, a spokesperson for Spotify released a statement about the ad, admitting that the company "regret[s] any distress" the ad might've caused viewers. Apparently, it was meant to be "a tongue-in-cheek horror parody -- intended to be a humorous ad that demonstrated just how catchy some tracks can be." Ultimately, though, the spokesperson speaking on Spotify's behalf claim the service will be more "mindful" of what it puts on television.
While some people love getting scared just before Halloween, other people don't find themselves quite as eager to be scared, and this Spotify ad ultimately did a number on the latter type, it seems. In any case, it succeeds in making Camila Cabello's very popular song seem "scary." Too scary, in fact, for some people's liking. In its own small way, that should be considered a feat. It's not every day someone -- let alone more than a few people, based on the swiftness of the ad being pulled from television -- spend their long day talking about how scary Camila Cabello is.
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Will is an entertainment writer based in Pittsburgh, PA. His writing can also be found in The Playlist, Cut Print Film, We Got This Covered, The Young Folks, Slate and other outlets. He also co-hosts the weekly film/TV podcast Cinemaholics with Jon Negroni and he likes to think he's a professional Garfield enthusiast.