Just in case you had the idea that the Catholic Church couldn’t get any more ridiculous than it already is, think again. The Archdiocese of Rio, Brazil, is threatening to sue the Italian soccer team because they made a commercial that included a Jesus statue in a soccer uniform.
Days before England play Italy in their first match at the World Cup, the Italians are in hot water in Brazil for a television commercial in which Rio de Janeiro’s iconic Christ the Redeemer statue is dressed in a giant Italian football shirt.
The Catholic Church in Brazil says the digitally-manipulated advertisement, which is running as a trailer for the competition on Italy’s state broadcaster, Rai, is disrespectful and inappropriate.
The 30-second video shows children dressed in the blue shirt of the “Azzurri” (Italy’s national team) scoring goals during games of street football and ends with an image of the towering statue of Christ wearing a number 10 shirt with the word “Italia” written across the shoulders. “Brazil awaits us”, the advertisement says.
The Archdiocese of Rio has threatened to sue the Italian broadcaster for between 15 and 21 million real (£4 million – £6 million) in damages, promising to give the money to charity if it wins the case.
“The Archdiocese is deeply offended,” Rodrigo Grazioli, a lawyer for the Brazilian Church, told O Globo newspaper.
Great. Now if you could explain why anyone should be a shit that you’re offended, someone might actually care. Seriously, you think you can sue a company in another country on behalf of a fucking statue?