U.K. Recruitment Company Pulls Job Ad Featuring 'Secretary' Film Poster


This film examines love in the workplace, and employer-employee relationships. Lee (Maggie Gyllenhaal) is a recently released mental patient who finds a job as a secretary to an overbearing lawyer, E. Edward Grey (James Spader). The two engage in a sexually charged affair, through which Lee gains a newfound self-confidence, but Grey begins to question their dominant-submissive relationship.

ICS Recruitment came under attack on Twitter for asking if prospective applicants for a London secretarial job were ready to "assume the position."

With Fifty Shades of Grey having topped the U.K. box office for two weeks straight and BDSM a hot topic thanks to the exploits of Christian Grey, there was probably a method to the madness of a London recruitment company's secretarial job advert earlier in March.

But sadly the decision by ICS Recruitment to use the poster for the steamy 2002 erotic thriller Secretary across its LinkedIn, Twitter and Instagram accounts didn't quite get the cinefile appreciation the company might have been hoping for.

"Secretary required in Mayfair. Stockings optional! £35k. Ready to assume the position?" read the ad, together with the suggestive film poster featuring a woman in a short skirt and stockings bending over, prompting a hail of complaints on Twitter.

"Sexist, derogatory, inappropriate and lazy," was how one described it, while another called ICS "backwards" for its "sexualization of women in the workplace."

Despite defending the ad, tweeting about its film origins and even its Golden Globe nomination, ICS later deleted it entirely across its social media channels.

Perhaps Elisabeth Moss' ceiling-smashing Peggy Olson from Mad Men or even The Simpsons' Waylon Smithers would be better options next time.