Fervent support of the Black Lives Matter movement, the British-Ghanaian actor John Boyega denounces its sidelining in an advertising spot by Jo Malone and on a poster of the film “Star Wars” intended for the Chinese market.
He was to represent the Jo Malone perfume brand internationally. But in the advertising short for China, John Boyega, star of the trilogy Star Wars, was replaced by Chinese actor Liu Haoran.
Offended by this decision taken without his permission, the actor - who himself directed the original spot - ended his contract as global ambassador for this brand from the American group Estée Lauder.
“The film celebrated my personal story - my hometown, my friends and my family. While many brands naturally appeal to a variety of global and local ambassadors, I cannot tolerate a person's culture being replaced in such a dismissive way, ”the immigrant son said on Twitter. Ghanaian born in London.
An identity erasure too much for the one whose image had already been shrunk on the poster of Stars Wars: The Force Awakens, produced by Disney, during its promotion in China in 2015. The actor waited five years before publicly expressing his anger. "What I would say to Disney is that there is no point in putting forward a black character, disproportionately promoting him and then putting him aside," he said in a recent interview with to GQ magazine.
In June, during a rally in honor of George Floyd in London, the actor gave a speech noticed in support of the Black Lives Matter movement. “The lives of blacks have always counted (…). We have always been important. We have always represented something. We have always succeeded despite everything. And now is the time. I will not wait, ”he proclaimed.
By refusing to continue his collaboration with Jo Malone, the actor reaffirms his commitment to the black cause.
Major brands mobilized
If the brand has recognized its mistake and now broadcasts the original spot, called "London Gent", in China, its strategy has something to clash in the landscape of current cosmetics communication, at a time when large groups are tackle the issue of racial injustices.
This is the case of Fenty Beauty, the brand of singer Rihanna, launched in partnership with an incubator of the giant LVMH, which joined the #BlackOutTuesday movement, a day of protest against racism and police violence.
The Glossier brand has donated a million dollars to the Black Lives Matter foundation and to beauty brands created by blacks.
Another example among many, the Sephora brands appeal to the solidarity of their members: they offer to donate the points accumulated on their loyalty card to the National Black Justice Coalition, an American organization that defends the rights of the African community. -american and LGBT.
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