The recent allegations surrounding FCB Ulka’s ‘Mr. India’ ad for Google have stirred a considerable buzz. The accusations, made by a former creative director at Pocket Aces, Abhinav Krishna, claim striking resemblances between FCB’s creation and a reel posted on Krishna’s Instagram account in June 2023. In response to these allegations, John Thangaraj, Group Chief Strategy Officer at FCB Group India, has stepped forward to set the record straight.
John Thangaraj response to Mr. India ad allegations
In a detailed response to AK’s post, John Thangaraj provided insights into the creative process behind the ‘Mr. India’ ad. He introduced himself as the leader of strategy at FCB in India and asserted his personal involvement in the project. Thangaraj emphasized that the FCB film drew inspiration from a specific scene in the original ‘Mr. India’ movie, released in 1987.
Thangaraj wrote, “Our film is inspired by a scene from the original Mr. India, which was released back in 1987. I’m not sure if you’ve watched the original, but if you have, you’ll recall a scene early on in the movie, where Arun (Anil Kapoor’s character) is hard selling his room for rent to Seema (Sridevi’s character).” This assertion aims to clarify that the creative roots of FCB’s ad lie in paying homage to a classic cinematic moment. He emphasizes that the intention was to honor a timeless scene rather than intentionally mimicking Krishna’s work.
He acknowledged the limitations of his evaluation, having seen only screenshots of Krishna’s animated short but maintained that any perceived similarity was coincidental. Thangaraj defended the creative integrity of both FCB and Google. He asserted that adherence to the highest standards remains paramount in their collaborative endeavors.
In his response, Thangaraj acknowledged the ease of making accusations in the age of social media and encouraged a more circumspect approach. He urged individuals to consider the intricacies of creative processes before levelling allegations. Thangaraj emphasized the unintentional nature of any perceived resemblance between the two works.
Background of allegations
Abhinav Krishna’s claims revolved around the narrative structure of both works. Both stories promise a potential tenant a breathtaking sea view. However, the reality of a cluttered cityscape visible from the balcony soon disillusions them. The key distinction lies in the tools employed to reveal the elusive sea. Google’s Pixel 8 ad showcases the smartphone’s zoom feature. On the other hand Krishna’s animated video features a character using binoculars.