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Hanni El Khatib Powers Controversial Audi Super Bowl Ad With “Can’t Win Em All”

Critics claim the spot's premise fits the description of sexual assault.

Among the most talked-about and popular commercials during the record-breaking 2013 Super Bowl was Audi’s “Prom” spot, which featured a teenage boy taking his dad’s car to the high school dance only to steal a kiss from the prom queen. The spot ends with the boy driving away sporting a black eye, presumably the result of a run-in with the prom king immediately following the kiss.

To soundtrack the high-profile spot, produced by San Francisco agency Venables Bell & Partners, Audi utilized “Can’t Win Em All,” the forthcoming single from L.A. based artist Hanni El Khatib’s second full-length release, Head in the Dirt, due to hit retailers on April 30.

The song (as well as the entire album) was produced by Dan Auerbach, one half of the Black Keys whose recording studio prowess has earned him a Best Producer nomination at the 2013 GRAMMY Awards.

“We just hit record and ripped right through,” Khatib told Rolling Stone about the sessions in Auerbach’s Nashville studio. “We had everyone in the room at once and just went for it. It was really loud in there.”

The response to the Audi ad hasn’t been entirely positive; critics of the commercial have called out the clip for promoting sexism, with Wired stating that the spot’s premise fits the description of sexual assault.

Ironically, the controversial conclusion was chosen out of a possible three endings by viewers in an online poll.

-Scott T. Sterling, CBS Radio

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