Following the release of HBO documentary Leaving Neverland, Michael Jackson’s reputation has taken a serious hit. Radio stations in Canada and New Zealand have banned his music from airwaves and rap superstar Drake even removed a Jackson-featured song from his tour set list.
Executives and creatives at fashion house Louis Vuitton have now taken a stance, releasing a statement ahead of their Fall 2019 menswear collection. Men’s artistic director Virgil Abloh drew inspiration from the King of Pop for the majority of its pieces, even designing their Paris Fashion Week runway set after the ending of Jackson’s, Billie Jean, music video.
“We find the allegations in the documentary deeply troubling and disturbing,” reads the statement from LV chairman and CEO, Michael Burke, according to WWD. “Child safety and welfare is of utmost importance to Louis Vuitton. We are fully committed to advocating this cause.”
Abloh shared his thoughts on the documentary as well, saying, “I am aware that in light of this documentary the show has caused emotional reactions. I strictly condemn any form of child abuse, violence or infringement against any human rights.”
The designer also explained why he chose Jackson as his main source of inspiration before the documentary’s release, adding, “My intention for this show was to refer to Michael Jackson as a pop culture artist. It referred only to his public life that we all know and to his legacy that has influenced a whole generation of artists and designers.”
The brand has now committed to not produce any item from the collection, “that directly features Michael Jackson elements.” Check out runway footage of the MJ-inspired Fall/ Winter 2019 collection below.