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Egypt Air shifts blame for bizarre Drew Barrymore article to local advertising agency

Egypt Air is trying to shift the blame to a local advertising agency for a bizarre article in its in-flight magazine purportedly based on an interview with actress Drew Barrymore.

The airline said it has an agreement with the Al-Ahram advertising agency, which edits articles and interviews for the Egyptian carrier’s in-flight magazine Horus.

According to Egypt Air, the agency is “totally responsible” for the magazine’s editorial content.

The article, riddled with misspellings and grammatical errors, led with a description of Barrymore as “being unstable in her relationships” and quoted her as saying that motherhood was “the most important role in my life”.

A separate statement by the advertising agency said the introductory paragraphs of the purported interview were not written by the interviewer, Aida Tekla.

“It is a product of the editor’s creativity,” the agency said, adding that it would investigate whether the lead of the interview reflected what the actress said.

“We apologise for any misunderstanding that might be interpreted as an offence to the great artist (Barrymore),” the statement said.

Egypt Air last week said it stood by the article, published in Horus’s October edition.

US press reports have quoted Barrymore’s representatives as denying any such interview took place, with some suggesting the author must have based her article on misinterpretations of a press conference.

Barrymore has yet to issue an official statement on the interview, but Al-Ahram said a representative of the actress contacted Tekla about the interview to say the American actress never spoke to Horus.

The representative did not know that Tekla, a senior member of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association, contributed to Horus, said the agency.

The article said Barrymore had failed relationships because her parents divorced.

“It is known that Barrymore had almost 17 relationships, engagements and marriages; psychologists believe that her behaviour is only natural since she lacked the male role model in her life after her parents’ divorce,” the article said.

Another passage quoted Barrymore as being pleased with recent weight loss after having a second daughter, while yet another quote describes Barrymore as celebrating women’s achievements in “the West” because they handle tasks men cannot.

“Women exert tremendous efforts that men are incapable of exerting due to their numerous commitments and obligations,” the article quoted Barrymore as saying.

Egypt Air’s in-flight magazine has Arabic and English sections, but translations are often poor and English-language articles are filled with errors.

Originally reported by Hamza Hendawi, Associated Press.

Picture: Reuters/Neil Hall

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