John Adedayo Bamidele Adegboyega, a British-Nigerian actor and producer, has announced he is stepping down as a brand ambassador for the British cologne company Jo Malone.
John made the announcement after the company cut out of the Chinese version of a commercial he originally conceived, directed, and starred in.
He was cut out of his commercial and replaced with Chinese actor Liu Haoran in the new version.
“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,’ he wrote on Monday.
“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,” John added.
However, Jo Malone issued a public apology to John.
Jo Malone said: “We deeply apologize for what, on our end, was a mistake in the local execution of the John Boyega campaign. 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. While we immediately took action and removed the local version of the campaign, we recognize that this was painful and that offense was caused. 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.”
Jo Malone accepted Boyega’s resignation, saying “We respect John’s decision and wish him all the best.”