TV channel balls-up delays drama series

M-NET postponed the broadcast of a new drama series after a Fifa football appeared in some scenes.

M-NET postponed the broadcast of a new drama series after a Fifa football appeared in some scenes.

"On reviewing Fifa's regulations around licensing for the World Cup during this time, M-Net and Waterfront Television realised that showing the scenes with the official Fifa ball would be against regulations," M-Net said in a statement yesterday.

It said experts were brought in to make the football scenes in the League of Glory series "as accurate and professional-looking as possible" but one of the experts brought an official Fifa ball and it was used in some of the takes.

M-Net said approximately nine minutes of the drama, which had been scheduled to go on air on April 28, were re-shot with the official ball replaced by a generic black and white one. Broadcast of the series will now start on May 5.

The pay channel said it had not been contacted by Fifa.

"The rest of the series, and football references within, adhere to the regulations and guidelines set forward by Fifa."

Fifa has stringent marketing laws around World Cups to protect the rights of its official partners, which include Adidas, Coca-Cola, Emirates and Sony.

Last month Fifa forced South African budget airline Kulula, which is not an official World Cup sponsor, to drop an advert after it used images of footballs and a World Cup stadium. Fifa said the combination of World Cup-related images in the Kulula advert constituted a breach of its marketing laws. - Sapa-AP

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