According to an article on Alternet, American Pie 2 is in trouble for a product placement. This year's teen-sex-filled sequel to the incredibly popular (and teen-sex-filled) American Pie included product placements of LifeStyle condoms. Not just in the movie itself, but in the advertising. And therein lies the trouble.
It turns out that it's perfectly acceptable to advertise a movie about horny teens boinking themselves crazy, but to imply that they might do it in at least a semi-responsible manner is taboo. Condoms may be OK in the movies, but you can't do that on TV. (Read the article).
Product placements have gotten to be big business in the last few years, as companies pay fees to have movie makers drop their wares conspicuously on the screen. The practice first came to public attention after the placement of Reeses Pieces in E.T., but it turns out it's been around at least 100 years before that.
I recently read that Balzac would drop glowing recommendations of certain Paris merchants, clothiers, and others, into his novels. It turns out that Balzac was always deeply in debt, and found the practice helped to placate his creditors.
On a different note, it will probably be nearly a week before I'm able to post again, as I still don't have a computer at home, and I'll be away from the office the first part of next week. Till then...