Dubai: A newly released ad by du shown at cinemas has been withdrawn by the company after it was criticised by viewers on its contents.

The ad titled ‘The man sitting next to you,’ was promoting VOX cinema’s ‘buy one get one free offer,’ by urging people to avoid coming to movies alone so they don’t suffer the inconveniences of sitting next to a stranger.

From flying popcorn and loudmouthed crunching to bad smells and loud slurping, the ad used graphic images to show bad habits a person may have to tolerate from the stranger sitting next to them at the movies.

In response to viewer’s complaints, du released a statement on Twitter: “We are aware that our ‘Man sitting next to you’ ad was loved by some but criticised by others. The purpose of the ad was to highlight some of the bad habits that are practiced by some moviegoers in hopes that it helps enhance the movie experience to all movie lovers in the UAE.”

It added: “However, we’ve heard your comments and decided to remove the ad from theatres out of respect to you.”

On twitter, moviegoers in the UAE, especially Emiratis, took offence to some of the bad habits portrayed in the ad, describing its content as “inappropriate behaviour” that gives the country “a bad reputation.” Others thanked du for taking their comments into consideration and removing the ad from theatres.

However, amid the large pool of criticism, some people praised the ad for its creativity and humour.