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FOR RELEASE: July 11, 2000
CONTACT: Dick Gunn
405/271-5601

SWAT: Coming to a Theater Near You

Students Working Against Tobacco (SWAT), an Oklahoma youth-led movement, is taking its message about Big Tobacco to the big screen. Members of SWAT are tired of being Big Tobacco's pawn and are finding new ways to expose the real story behind the corporate lies.

Beginning July 14, a unique 60-second spot, formatted to simulate a movie preview, will appear on 140 movie screens throughout the state for four weeks, including all Regal, AMC and Tinsel Town theaters.

The spot begins with a riveting series of short clips from a plot based on a giant corporation making huge profits by deceptively marketing a deadly product. The dramatic ad culminates with one of the main characters stating “this is not a movie.” The closing screen displays a digital counter of the three million worldwide deaths caused by tobacco each year. A shorter version of the ad appeared on television in Oklahoma in late May through mid-June.

Informal surveys of 57 Oklahoma youth from grades 6 to 12 were conducted to select the ad from various ads developed in other states. The ad was originally produced by the State of Florida as part of a comprehensive, statewide program designed by youth. According to the latest Florida Youth Tobacco Survey, tobacco use by Florida middle school students dropped by 54 percent, and tobacco use by Florida high school students has dropped 24 percent since the start of Florida's comprehensive program in 1998.

For more information, log on to www.okswat.com.

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