15 September 2020

John Boyega quits as Jo Malone ambassador role after being substituted in Chinese ad campaign

John Boyega has stepped down as Jo Malone’s global ambassador after he was axed from a Chinese version of an aftershave commercial.  

The Star Wars actor, 28, made the ad for the perfume company in London but it was re-shot for the Chinese market. 

He said on Twitter that their decision was ‘wrong’,  before adding that ‘dismissively trading out one’s culture this way is not something I can condone’.

Boyega said: "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.

"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. The film celebrated my personal story– showcasing my hometown, including my friends and featuring my family.

"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 London apologised in a statement to The Hollywood Reporter that the decision was a ‘mis-step’ and that they had since removed the Chinese version of the campaign.

They said: “We deeply apologise for what, on our end, was a mistake in the local execution of the John Boyega campaign.

“While we immediately took action and removed the local version of the campaign, we recognise that this was painful and that offence was caused.”

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