Tourism NZ says sorry for pothead stoner slur

By Amelia Wade

Tourism NZ has apologised to a Hollywood actor for comparing her to a pothead stoner with "no credibility" after she criticised Kiwi men for being vulgar.

While appearing on an American chat show, Anna Faris said Kiwi men yelled obscenities at her when she was in the country filming Yogi Bear last year.

Tourism NZ spokesman Ian Long responded to the comments in the Herald on Sunday by saying Ms Faris had no credibility because earlier in the year she had accepted an award for being "a pothead stoner".

The national tourism agency has now apologised for any offence the remarks may have caused.

"The inference that Tourism NZ did not take Ms Faris' comments seriously is very much regretted and was certainly not intended.

"On a US talk show Ms Faris spoke about disrespectful behaviour she experienced during her stay in New Zealand and as a consequence her impression of New Zealand men is, to say the least, poor."

Should Ms Faris return to New Zealand, Tourism NZ said it would offer her some "great Kiwi hospitality" to make up for the comments and the vulgar behaviour she experienced.

In December last year, Ms Faris told television host George Lopez on his talkshow that men demanded she show them her breasts while she walked around downtown Auckland.

"I'm walking home, I've got my backpack on, got my jeans on, and this carload of guys - they were like in their 40s, from what I could glimpse - they said, 'f*** you, a***hole'."

Lopez then asked the actor why the men had shouted the obscenities.

She replied: "I don't know, and, like, three minutes later, a car full of older gentlemen said, 'show me your tits, you stupid b****'."

Tourism NZ said it was regrettable that Ms Faris did not enjoy her stay in the country because of the obscenities that were yelled at her.

"We want all visitors to enjoy positive experiences and leave with good memories of their stay in our country. Feedback from visitors and satisfaction of their stay in New Zealand is normally very high, so it is exceptionally unfortunate that Ms Faris experienced intolerable treatment."

Ms Faris could not be reached for comment.

- NZ Herald

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