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Julia Fox defends Kim Kardashian amid Balenciaga ad campaign scandal

Fury: Julia Fox has defended Kim Kardashian amid mounting pressure on the star to cut ties with Balenciaga after the brand included images of children carrying teddy bears in bondage in an ad campaign

Julia Fox has defended Kim Kardashian amid mounting pressure on the star to cut ties with Balenciaga after the brand included images of children carrying teddy bears in bondage in an ad campaign. 

Fox, 31, who briefly dated Kardashian’s ex Kanye West, 45, posted two bizarre TikTok videos on Monday in which she appeared to be naked, and berated ‘pushback on female stars associated to the brand’ while declaring ‘men are the issue.’

This came hours Kardashian finally broke her silence on Sunday night, denouncing the brand, with whom she frequently collaborates, noting how she was ‘shaken’ and ‘disgusted’ to see the images – but did officially end her relationship with them.

Fury: Julia Fox has defended Kim Kardashian amid mounting pressure on the star to cut ties with Balenciaga after the brand included images of children carrying teddy bears in bondage in an ad campaign

Fury: Julia Fox has defended Kim Kardashian amid mounting pressure on the star to cut ties with Balenciaga after the brand included images of children carrying teddy bears in bondage in an ad campaign

In a video captioned: ‘Respectfully I’ve never cashed a balenci check so pls keep me tf out it thanks!’ Fox said: ‘I’m seeing a lot of comments and tags, so first things first, I am not their spokesperson

‘I have zero relationship with the brand, I’ve never even been to one of their shows. they haven’t invited me… Regardless, I think it’s horrific and when I was reading and watching all the videos I literally felt sick to my stomach.

‘But I couldn’t help but think, damn, the women who are associated to the brand professionally are getting so much pushback, it’s almost as if they’re the f*****g child molesters.’

Over the screen she wrote: ‘Why are women being blamed for a MAN’S mistake? It’s the internalized misogyny for me.’

September shoot: This came hours Kardashian finally broke her silence on Sunday night, denouncing the brand, with whom she frequently collaborates, noting how she was 'shaken' and 'disgusted' to see the images

September shoot: This came hours Kardashian finally broke her silence on Sunday night, denouncing the brand, with whom she frequently collaborates, noting how she was ‘shaken’ and ‘disgusted’ to see the images 

Wow: Fox, 31, posted two bizarre TikTok videos on Monday in which she appeared to be naked, and berated 'pushback on female stars associated to the brand' while declaring 'men are the issue'

Over the screen she wrote: 'Why are women being blamed for a MAN'S mistake? It¿s the internalized misogyny for me.'

Wow: Fox, 31, posted two bizarre TikTok videos on Monday in which she appeared to be naked, and berated ‘pushback on female stars associated to the brand’ while declaring ‘men are the issue’

Ex:: Fox dated Kim's ex Kanye West for two months at the start of the year (pictured January 2022)

Ex:: Fox dated Kim’s ex Kanye West for two months at the start of the year (pictured January 2022)

A further expletive-filled video captioned ‘But everyone loves pointing the finger at everyone BUT the man’ saw Fox become increasingly irate.

She said: ‘You guys love saying Hollyweird, all the pedophiles in Hollyweird…

‘Listen up f***faces, there’s pedophiles in every industry! You wanna go be a chef, there’s probably some abusers over there, you wanna be a teacher? Abusers over there, you wanna be an engineer, abusers over there.

‘This isn’t an issue with Hollywood, this isn’t an issue with the fashion world, this isn’t an issue with celebrities, this is an issue with men goddamnit, men, men!’

Kardashian, 42, who has been in business with the company for several years spoke out days after the company had already apologized for the scandal. She is often seen wearing Balenciaga to major events and has featured in several of the brand’s campaigns in the past.

Fuming: A further expletive-filled video captioned 'But everyone loves pointing the finger at everyone BUT the man' saw Fox become increasingly irate'

Fuming: A further expletive-filled video captioned ‘But everyone loves pointing the finger at everyone BUT the man’ saw Fox become increasingly irate’

But on social media, users appeared skeptical of Kardashian’s statement which took days to prepare, with many suggesting that it was not sincere and that she was waiting and hoping for things to blow over. Many said that only a complete cutting of ties with the Spanish brand would now be appropriate.

She issued it last night, saying: ‘I have been quiet for the past few days, not because I haven’t been shocked and outraged by the recent Balenciaga campaigns, but because I wanted an opportunity to speak to their team to understand for myself how this could have happened. Kardashian said in a statement on her Instagram page.

Kardashian continued: ‘As a mother of four, I have been shaken by those disturbing images. The safety of children must be held with the highest regard and anything against it should have no place in our society – period.’

She subsequently reissued the statement that saw some of the wording changed using stronger language adding: ‘any attempts to normalize child abuse of any kind should have no place in our society – period.’ 

However, on balance, Kardashian said that she is comfortable with how the company reacted to the scandal.

‘I appreciate Balenciaga’s removal of the campaigns and apology. In speaking with them, I believe they understand the seriousness of the issue and will take the necessary measures for this to never happen again.’

Balenciaga, which is popular with A-list celebrities including the likes of Kim Kardashian - has deleted two shocking images showing two young girls holding a teddy bear in bondage style gear on the gift shop section of its website

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Balenciaga, which is popular with A-list celebrities including the likes of Kim Kardashian – has deleted two shocking images showing two young girls holding a teddy bear in bondage style gear on the gift shop section of its website

One of the ad's photos contained an excerpt from the US Supreme Court opinion in United States v. Williams, which upheld part of a federal child pornography law, which Twitter's own fact-checkers confirmed

One of the ad’s photos contained an excerpt from the US Supreme Court opinion in United States v. Williams, which upheld part of a federal child pornography law, which Twitter’s own fact-checkers confirmed

In an additional post, to both Instagram and Twitter, Kardashian said she was reconsidering her relationship with the fashion brand but had not yet many any firm decisions.

‘As for my future with Balenciaga, I am currently re-evaluating my relationship with the brand, basing it off their willingness to accept accountability for something that should have never happened to begin with — & the actions I am expecting to see them take to protect children.’ 

The sincerity of Kim’s response was further questioned when images emerged of Kardashian staging an impromptu fashion shoot in skimpy hotpants not long before she put out her statement.

 ‘I don’t believe that you’re being sincere at all. I think you were just hoping that it would blow over. There’s no way that they paid for an ad campaign, didn’t look it over thoroughly before they put it out there. Seems like it’s more about money for you,’ wrote one fan.

‘You can’t be that outraged if you’re going to continue to model for them I applaud u for speaking up but the fact that this even happened speaks volumes and so publicly at that. Shame on Balenciaga and anyone who still supports them. Things like this don’t deserve a second chance,’ added another.

Kim initially issued a statement on her Instagram Stories account on Sunday night

Kim initially issued a statement on her Instagram Stories account on Sunday night

She subsequently issued a second statement that changed some of the wording, noting that ‘any attempts to normalize child abuse of any kind should have no place in our society – period’

In an additional post, this time to both Twitter and Instagram, Kardashian said she was reconsidering her relationship with the fashion brand

In an additional post, this time to both Twitter and Instagram, Kardashian said she was reconsidering her relationship with the fashion brand

Kardashian is often seen wearing Balenciaga to major events and has featured in several of the brand's campaigns in the past such as Paris Fashion Week, above

Kardashian is often seen wearing Balenciaga to major events and has featured in several of the brand’s campaigns in the past such as Paris Fashion Week, above 

‘Coming from a fan of you for many years this isn’t good enough. Now maybe you couldn’t of done anything then but you can now cut ties with Balenciaga at least! Ain’t no one forgetting this one there’s no excuse big enough to cover what everyone saw,’ echoed a third.

‘No. They were promoting child sexual abuse. How on EARTH can you say they ‘understand the severity’ and still work with them, especially as a mom?? This shows how sheltered you are. No concept of the impact this has on victims. Disgusting,’ responded one user.

Kardashian’s statement, in which she professed to be ‘shocked’ by what she had witnessed, did not appear to stop her posting for a photo shoot on Saturday night.

Fans appeared to be outraged that Kardashian had not come down firmly against the brand and instead seemed to be taking the temperature from her followers.

Many had sound advice of their own for the multi-billion dollar reality star.

‘I’ve tolerated a lot of s****y & problematic behavior from the Kardashians, but this was the final straw for me. Immediate unfollow & no longer supporting their show, which, let’s face it, is just a giant ad campaign for them and, apparently, their promoting of child sex abuse,’ wrote one Twitter user. 

‘Delete this again and come back with the right statement. One that says “I am cutting ties with Balenciaga due to the disturbing images in their campaign involving children.” The only statement that should have been made,’ stated Gina.

Social media users appeared skeptical of Kardashian's statement which she took days to prepare, with many suggesting only a complete cutting of ties from the brand would be appropriate.

Social media users appeared skeptical of Kardashian’s statement which she took days to prepare, with many suggesting only a complete cutting of ties from the brand would be appropriate.

‘Kim you don’t need the money from them. The red line has been crossed and as a mother of four and decent human being, you know that. There is no grey area here. Do the right thing and end your relationship with them, otherwise this whole statement is a wash,’ stated Twitter user Gays Against Groomers. 

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Kardashian is often seen wearing Balenciaga to major events and has featured in several of the brand’s campaigns in the past.

Essentially the fashion face of the company, Kardashian is Balenciaga’s biggest supporter and the brand’s most famous model, appearing to walk on water in the fashion house’s fall 2022 campaign. 

She was famously introduced to Balenciaga Creative Director Demna Gvasalia by her ex, Kanye West with the couple’s daughters also sporting the brand, too, having recently been spotted carrying four-figure bags from the brand.   

She acknowledged the role her ex-husband had played in the relationship in December 2021 as she spoke at the People’s Choice Awards where she accepted an award for fashion.

‘To Kanye, for really introducing me to the fashion world,’ she said. ‘I fell in love with fashion and I’m so inspired by so many people. But again, this is like a dream that I get to wake up and wear these amazing clothes and try new things and take a risk. I’m so humbled.’ 

On Twitter, users appeared skeptical of Kardashian's statement with many suggesting only a complete the complete cutting of ties from the brand would be appropriate

On Twitter, users appeared skeptical of Kardashian’s statement with many suggesting only a complete the complete cutting of ties from the brand would be appropriate

At the time, Vogue described it as ‘the peak of Kardashian’s Balenciaga moment.’ 

More recently, on the Season 2 finale of Hulu’s The Kardashians which dropped last week, she seen was chatting with head designer Demna.

During the episode she explained how her relationship with Balenciaga started with West, but that it had evolved throughout the years. 

‘Demna is the head designer of Balenciaga. I think the partnership with Balenciaga obviously came from Kanye, but I was just genuinely loving their clothes and wearing them all the time and it was a really organic relationship that happened, and I think those are the best ones.’

‘Every day was a campaign anyway, because that’s what I genuinely love, so the fact that it turned into real ones, and just walking in the show, just means so much,’ Kardashian says in confession.

In July 2022, Kardashian walked the catwalk and modeled for the brand at Paris Fashion Week. 

She was seen wearing the brand as recently as last week as she sported a wearing  Adidas x Balenciaga collaboration top, two of the designers who dropped her ex West, 45, after his recent anti-Semitic rants.

She wore a top from the two designer’s collaboration, a long-sleeve black shirt with white stripes on the sleeve and the names of the brands placed in the center of the chest.

Kardashian’s statement came after the fashion house filed a pair of $25 million lawsuits in connection with the ad campaign against the producers who came up with showing children holding teddy bears in BDSM gear for the promotion of its spring collection. 

North Six - a worldwide production company tailored to ads - is being sued by Balenciaga in a $25 million lawsuit along with model photographer, Nicholas Des Jardins. Pictured: North Six's company logo

North Six – a worldwide production company tailored to ads – is being sued by Balenciaga in a $25 million lawsuit along with model photographer, Nicholas Des Jardins. Pictured: North Six’s company logo 

The fashion house from Spain is suing ad production company North Six Inc., as well as set designer Nicholas Des Jardins and his own brand for including images of legal documents on the US Supreme Court’s decision on child pornography laws in the same ad campaign. 

Alleging that North Six and Des Jardins had purposefully included the judicial records in the ad without telling its executives, Balenciaga has described the move as ‘malevolent, or at the very least, extraordinarily reckless’. 

The high-end luxury brand is added that it is now looking to ‘redress for extensive damages defendants caused in connection with an advertising campaign Balenciaga hired them to produce,’ read a summons from the Manhattan Supreme Court. 

Among the clothing worn by the children’s toys in the ads are fishnet stockings, chokers, string vests and chains leading to many on social media to refer to it as ‘child porn’ and ‘disturbing.’

Perhaps the most shocking image is that of a document from a previous advertisement, pictured close to a child and tucked under a purse, the 2008 Supreme Court ruling United States v Williams which examined if laws against the promotion of child pornography were in violation of the first amendment.

The ruling determined that offering or requesting to transfer, sell, deliver, or trade child pornography did not violate the First Amendment to the United States Constitution, even if a person charged under the code did not in fact possess child pornography with which to trade. 

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The late Justice Antonin Scalia noted specifically that offers to engage in illegal transactions are categorically excluded from First Amendment protection.

‘As a result of Defendants’ misconduct, members of the public, including the news media, have falsely and horrifically associated Balenciaga with the repulsive and deeply disturbing subject of the court decision,’ court documents reveal.

‘Defendants are liable to Balenciaga for all harm resulting from this false association.’ 

Ads were initially released over Paris Fashion Week at the end of September, start of October and were intended to boost the fashion house’s spring 2023 collection.  

On Tuesday, Balenciaga publicly apologized and announced that it will be swiping off the ad from all of its social media profiles. 

Clearly embarrassed by its ill-judged campaign, Balenciaga took the drastic step of wiping its social media pages clean.

‘We sincerely apologize for any offense our holiday campaign may have caused. Our plush bear bags should not have been featured with children in this campaign. We have immediately removed the campaign from all platforms,’ the high-end luxury house shared on Instagram. 

Balenciaga issued a public apology on its Instagram profile last week, before deleting its social media history. Prior to the lawsuit, the brand had previously stated that it will pursue legal action against those found to be responsible for the scandal surrounding the controversial ad

Balenciaga issued a public apology on its Instagram profile last week, before deleting its social media history. Prior to the lawsuit, the brand had previously stated that it will pursue legal action against those found to be responsible for the scandal surrounding the controversial ad

 

As of last week, Balenciaga did not only delete all of its posts related to ads for its Spring 2023 collection on Instagram but also wiped out its entire page

DailyMail.com has reached out to Balenciaga for comment on the lawsuit. 

Earlier this month, the Paris-based company said that its controversial ad ‘iterates on the artist’s series Toy Stories, an exploration of what people collect and receive as gifts,’ according to a press release. 

It went on to say that it would feature ‘dozens of new products ranging from homeware, pet wear and scent, from everyday items to limited-edition collectibles and bespoke furniture.’ 

Some of the pictures were shot by Italian photographer Gabriele Galimberti, who is perhaps best known for his work with National Geographic. On his Instagram page, Galimberti issued an apology saying that he was not in creative control of the shoot and merely was in charge of lighting.

He said: ‘I am not in a position to comment [on] Balenciaga’s choices, but I must stress that I was not entitled in whatsoever manner to neither chose (sic) the products, nor the models, nor the combination of the same.’

Galimberti continued: ‘As a photographer, I was only and solely requested to lit (sic) the given scene, and take the shots according to my signature style.

‘As usual, the direction of the campaign and of the shooting are not on the hands of the photographer.’

He concluded: ‘I suspect that any person prone to pedophilia searches on the web and has unfortunately a too easy access to images completely different than mine, absolutely explicit in their awful content. Lynching like these are addressed against wrong targets, and distract from the real problem, and criminals.’

Italian photographer Gabriele Galimberti, who worked on the photoshoot featuring the BDSM teddy bears, stressed that he wasn't 'entitled in whatsoever manner to neither chose (sic) the products, nor the models, nor the combination of the same'

Italian photographer Gabriele Galimberti, who worked on the photoshoot featuring the BDSM teddy bears, stressed that he wasn’t ‘entitled in whatsoever manner to neither chose (sic) the products, nor the models, nor the combination of the same’

Galimberti also said that he had nothing to do with the photos of the Supreme Court documents.

Meanwhile, the father of a British child model who posed in the campaign has defended the photoshoot, previously telling DailyMail.com that his daughter had a ‘fantastic time’ on set. 

Balenciaga is typically associated with A-list celebrities such as Kim Kardashian but in the fallout from this most recent scandal, model Bella Hadid deleted an Instagram post promoting the brand, but has left several others up that promote Balenciaga.

Balenciaga was founded by Spanish monarchist Cristobal Balenciaga in 1991. The current creative director of the brand is Georgia native Demna Gvasalia.

In 2001, the company, which quotes annual revenues of nearly two billion, was acquired by Kering from Gucci.

Galimberti promoted the images as part of a project series he called 'Toy Stories,' in an apparent reference to the Disney/Pixar film series

Galimberti promoted the images as part of a project series he called ‘Toy Stories,’ in an apparent reference to the Disney/Pixar film series

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