As racism continues to plague our everyday life and the entertainment industry, celebrities are continuing to fight back.
The latest instance of a company wronging a person of color is Jo Malone, as Star Wars actor John Boyega has decided to cut ties with the British cologne maker. The issue began when Malone aired a short film –shot by the Black Brit– in it’s China markets and cut out any scenes that Boyega was featured in. Malone– who last year named Boyega it’s first male global ambassador– issued an apology for removing him and using a Chinese actor named Liu Haoran, who is the star of the hugely popular Detective Chinatown film franchise.
The original clip entitled London Gent showed Boyega in his natural habitat of Peckham, London, as he enjoyed a few moments with his actual friends and family. He’s even featured riding a horse while his crew cycles alongside him.
“We deeply apologize for what, on our end, was a mistake in the local execution of the John Boyega campaign,” Jo Malone London told The Hollywood Reporter. “John is a tremendous artist with great personal vision and direction. The concept for the film was based on John’s personal experiences and should not have been replicated.”
The company said it also apologized to Haoran, who was not involved in the creation of the campaign.
“While we immediately took action and removed the local version of the campaign, we recognize that this was painful and that offense was caused,” it added. “We respect John, and support our partners and fans globally. We are taking this misstep very seriously and we are working together as a brand to do better moving forward.”
Now, despite the apology, Boyega has decided to cut ties with Malone by posting the announcement in a round of tweets.
“Their decision to replace my campaign in China by using my concepts and substituting a local brand ambassador for me, without either my consent or prior notice, was wrong,” wrote Boyega, adding that the film “celebrated my personal story– showcasing my hometown, including my friends and featuring my family.”