Supermodels Back Model Mistreatment Revelation

MODELS including Helena Christensen, Carolyn Murphy, Elsa Hosk, Leomie Anderson, Julia Stegner, Hillary Rhoda, Joan Smalls, Jourdana Phillips, Julie Hoomans, Dilone - and industry figures including make-up artist Kay Montano, hairstylist Anthony Turner, CEO Antoine Arnault, and stylist Mary Fellowes - have spoken in support of model casting agent James Scully who has elected to name and shame brands and individuals accused of mistreating models. Scully, who made the pledge at the Business of Voices seminar late last year, upheld his promise with a post on Instagram yesterday calling out individuals hired to cast for shows including Balenciaga, Lanvin, Elie Saab and Hermés.

James Scully

James Scully

James Scully

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"I was very disturbed to hear from a number of girls this morning that yesterday at the Balenciaga casting, Madia and Ramy (serial abusers) held a casting in which they made over 150 girls wait in a stairwell told them they would have to stay over three hours to be seen and not to leave. In their usual fashion they shut the door went to lunch and turned off the lights, to the stairs leaving every girl with only the lights of their phones to see," he wrote. "Not only was this sadistic and cruel it was dangerous and left more than a few of the girls I spoke with traumatised. Most of the girls have asked to have their options for Balenciaga cancelled, as well as Hermés and Elie Saab who they also cast for, because they refuse to be treated like animals."

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Scully accused another French house, Lanvin, of requesting that no "women of colour" be sent to cast for its show, something that a spokesperson for the house told WWD was "completely false and baseless".

James Scully

James Scully

James Scully

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The lengthy post then called on Balenciaga or its owner Kering - a company that has been recognised for its dedication to diversity and inclusion, and which has been awarded the Gender Equality European & International Standard label - to take immediate action, which it did.

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James Scully with Lady Gaga

James Scully with Lady Gaga

James Scully with Lady Gaga

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“On Sunday, February 26, Balenciaga took notice of issues with the model castings carried out on that day. The house reacted immediately, making radical changes to the casting process, including discontinuing the relationship with the current casting agency," a statement from the brand read. The agents in question are reported to be Maida Gregori Boina and Rami Fernandes, neither of whom have addressed the claims. "Additionally, Balenciaga sent a written apology to the agencies of the models who were affected by this specific situation, asking them to share it with them. Balenciaga condemns this incident and will continue to be deeply committed to ensure the most respectful working conditions for the models."

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@jamescscully

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The modelling maelstrom is unlikely to end there, however, with Scully closing his post with a plea that any model suffering at the hands of brands or individuals with "no regard for human decency or the lives and feelings of these girls" should report the incident to him directly. "It seems to be the only way we can force change and give the power back to you models and agents where it rightfully belongs. Watch this space."Naomi Backs Leomie's Backstage Complaints

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