Advertising in Italian films is now legal as the result of a new measure approved by the government to reform the public funding of Italian cinema. Product placement in films has been banned until now in Italy although it is legal in the main cinema-exporting countries such as the United States, Great Britain and France.
Other measures approved by the government to boost Italian cinema include more funding for the first works of unknown directors and the creation of a single commission instead of the present four from which to obtain state funding.
Mediaset, the media conglomerate of prime minster, Silvio Berlusconi, has interests in both film distribution and in advertising.
Members of two of the opposition parties responsible for cultural issues, have criticised the government for passing the law without debating it in parliament calling it an example of the parliamentary majority's indiscriminate use of the fast-track system on important issues.