Fox apologizes for 'X-Men: Apocalypse' ads showing Jennifer Lawrence being strangled

New York (CNN)20th Century Fox is apologizing for an "X-Men: Apocalypse" promotional image showing Jennifer Lawrence's character Mystique being strangled by villain Apocalypse.

The grim image was plastered on roadside billboards, posters and is featured in the movie's trailer.
Social media has been smoldering over the ads showing such violence to a woman.
    The film studio responded to the backlash by saying that they were removing the image from promotional materials.
    "In our enthusiasm to show the villainy of the character Apocalypse we didn't immediately recognize the upsetting connotation of this image in print form," Fox said in a statement. "Once we realized how insensitive it was, we quickly took steps to remove those materials. We apologize for our actions and would never condone violence against women."
    People took to Twitter to express their outrage over the seemingly sexist image.
    One Twitter user wrote: "The appeal of the X-Men poster showing Jennifer Lawrence being choked is that battery can be fun?"
    Another user wrote: "Is anyone else bothered by the fact that one of the most prominent advertisements for X-Men: Apocalypse is Jennifer Lawrence being choked?"
    This doesn't seem to be affecting the success of Fox's popular franchise, however.
    "Apocalypse" opened at the top spot at the North American box office last weekend and has so far grossed over $285 million worldwide.