John Legend Super Bowl ad removes helicopter scene out of respect to Kobe Bryant

"We took down the spot out of compassion and sensitivity to the families"

The creators of a new car advert set to feature in this weekend’s Super Bowl coverage, starring John Legend and Chrissy Teigen, have explained their decision to re-cut the promotional clip out out of respect to the recent death of Kobe Bryant.

The opening seconds of the clip originally featured a helicopter in the scene, and was shot prior to the tragic deaths of Kobe Bryant, his daughter Gianna Maria-Onore Bryant, and seven other passengers in a helicopter crash last Sunday (January 26).

“Today we re-cut our Super Bowl ad, to remove a stationary helicopter that was in the opening two seconds of the commercial,” a Genesis spokesperson confirmed to USA Today.

“The ad had been filmed, produced and delivered well before Sunday’s tragedy, so we took down the spot out of compassion and sensitivity to the families.”

Legend was among countless figures from the entertainment world to express their shock and sadness following the news of 41-year-old’s death, describing Bryant as a “brilliant man we lost too soon”.

In the wake of his death, Kobe Bryant’s Oscar-winning short film Dear Basketball continues to be shared by fans around the world.

Written and narrated by Bryant, directed and animated by Glen Keane, and with music from John Williams, Dear Basketball is based on a letter the star wrote to The Players’ Tribune on November 29, 2015 announcing his retirement from the game.

Upon accepting his Oscar at the 2018 awards ceremony, Bryant quipped, “As basketball players, we’re really supposed to shut up and dribble – but I’m glad we get to do a little more than that,” before paying tribute to his wife and children.