Pierce Brosnan, ‘shocked and saddened’ by Pan Bahar adOctober 21, 2016
On October 7, when newspapers and hoarding across India showed Pierce Brosnan advertising for Pan Bahar paan masala, social media went tizzy from laughter.
However, on Thursday, Brosnan, known for his portrayal of iconic role as MI5 agent in the James Bond series, said he was “deeply shocked and saddened” about the events following his participation in the endorsement of Pan Bahar breath freshener, which may include ingredients that cause cancer.
Brosnan explained that he has the “greatest love and affection for India and its people,” in a statement to PEOPLE.
“As a man who has spent decades championing women’s healthcare and environmental protection, I was distressed to learn of Pan Bahar’s unauthorised and deceptive use of my image to endorse their range of pan masala products,” the statement read. “I would never have entered into an agreement to promote a product in India that is dangerous to one’s health.”
Brosnan’s contract details that he was to advertise a “breath freshener/tooth whitener,” which wouldn’t include an ingredient that turns saliva red.
Brosnan said he agreed to advertise a single product only, and that it was presented as “all-natural containing neither tobacco, supari, nor any other harmful ingredient.”
“Having endured, in my own personal life, the loss of my first wife and daughter as well as numerous friends to cancer, I am fully committed to supporting women’s healthcare and research programs that improve human health and alleviate suffering,” the statement continued.
Brosnan demanded the company to remove him from its advertising campaign, and claimed to have had no prior knowledge of endorsing something that would harm one’s health.