American Apparel is making headlines again after a leaked email for a casting call said that “Instagram hoes” would not be welcome.
The email, sent by casting agent PhotoGenics, called for models to attend the March 18 casting at American Apparel’s Los Angeles office. The message, written in all caps, read: “Company is going through a rebranding image so will be shooting models moving forward. Real models. Not Instagram hoes or THOTS.” (THOT is an acronym for “that hoe over there.”)
According to PhotoGenics agency director Phira Luon, who reportedly wrote the email, the note was only meant to be seen by a select few who would be attending the call.
“The comment made at the end was made in jest with models whom I have a personal relationship with and did not reflect the views, or directives by the client. I apologize to all those who were offended or affected by my comments, as it was not my intention,” she told Animal NewYork.
The casting agency took full responsibility for the email and Luon even addressed it in the New York Post as “an inappropriate, off-color joke that was not intended to defame the client’s name or philosophy/views in any way.”
Cynthia Erland, American Apparel senior vice president of marketing, reemphasized that the message was not sent by the company, and doesn’t represent its views. On Tuesday, the company posted a photo to Facebook with the caption: “This is American Apparel, always has been and always will be. We love all of our models, all shapes and sizes. #welovediversity #weloveyouall!”
“It’s just completely false that American Apparel is only using professional models, and we have had and continue to have public casting calls on our calendar. We continue to look for diverse models of all sizes and backgrounds that look great in our clothes, and these open casting calls play a key role. Suggestions to the contrary are the result of a deeply offensive email written by an employee of a casting agency, PhotoGenics, with which American Apparel will no longer be working,” Erland said in a statement sent to MSNBC on Thursday.
American Apparel is seemingly trying to move past recent scandals and public controversies. The company made headlines numerous times in the last year, most recently for airbrushing nipples in online advertisements for lingerie.
The company appointed Paula Schneider as CEO in January. The change in leadership comes after the now-former CEO, Dov Charney, was fired in December amid sexual misconduct allegations. All eyes are on Schneider now, as the public hopes the new CEO can tone down the brand.