Actor and activist John Boyega is stepping down from British Perfume and Candle Company, Jo Malone after they cut him from a promotional advertisement that he created. Jo Malone replaced the British actor with Liu Haoran for the Chinese market and eliminated all the Black people who appeared in the original video that Boyega created and directed.
John Boyega said that the decision to substitute another actor for him without his consent or prior notice was wrong. The short film included his hometown, including my friends and featuring family that he wanted to showcase through this advertisement.
On September 14th, Boyega stated, “I have decided to step down as Jo Malone’s global ambassador. When I joined the brand as their first male global ambassador last year, I created the short film we used to launch the campaign. It won the Fragrance Foundation Virtual awards 2020 for Best Media Campaign.”
“While many brands understandably use a variety of global and local ambassadors , dismissively trading out one’s culture this way is not something I can condone.”
“It’s back to back but I assure you this will be dealt with swiftly. I don’t have time for nonsense. We press on and strong. Stay blessed people.”
Jo Malone has since apologized exclusively through The Hollywood Reporter by stating, “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.”
John Boyega has always stood for Black lives and will continue to pursue what is right no matter the consequences.