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Balenciaga sues production company for $25M over the controversial campaign

After paperwork about the Supreme Court’s ruling on child pornography was found in one of the images, luxury fashion house Balenciaga sued the company behind the Spring 2023 ads.

The lawsuit was filed Friday by the New York State Supreme Court by Balenciaga, who is already under fire for a campaign that involved children. Balenciaga seeks at least $25,000,000 in damages from North Six, Inc., the set designer Nicholas Des Jardins, and his company

According to the court summons, Balenciaga employed North Six and Des Jardins for the development and production of its Spring 2023 campaign.

The campaign featured Nicole Kidman, actor, and Bella Hadid, model. The shots were taken in a Manhattan office space.

A messy desk is shown in the first image. However, there was a page of United States v. Williams (2008) on the desk. This case “confirms as illegal and unprotected by freedom of speech” the promotion of child pornography, according to a statement.

According to the court document, Balenciaga (which is owned by Kering in France) did not know of or authorize the inclusion of this piece of paperwork.

Balenciaga stated in its statement that “all of the items in this shooting were supplied by third parties who confirmed in writing that they were fake office documents.” They were most likely legal papers that had been used in the production of a TV drama.

Balenciaga stated in the summons that it believed the defendants’ “inexplicable actions and omissions” were either malevolent or at the very minimum, extremely reckless.

According to the court filing, Balenciaga was falsely associated with the subject of the court’s decision by members of the public. It states that North Six and Des Jardins should be held responsible for any harm caused by this false association.

Amelia K. Brankov was an attorney for Nicholas Des Jardins LLC and Nicholas Des Jardins LLC. She stated in an emailed statement, “There certainly wasn’t a malevolent scheme going. Balenciaga knows that many boxes of documents were simply sourced from a rental house.

“Moreover, Balenciaga representatives were present at the shooting, supervising it, handling papers, props,” Brankov stated. “And Des Jardins, as a set designer, was not responsible for image selections from the shoot.”

North Six representatives stated that the production company had no creative input or control over shooting. North Six was not present during the final set of arrangements.

Bad judgment

Balenciaga stated that it will be taking responsibility for the lack of oversight and control over the images as it investigates the matter.

“We are strengthening the structures surrounding our creative processes, and validation steps and we are reinforcing them. It stated that it wanted to make sure that the new controls marked a pivot and would prevent it from happening again. Balenciaga sincerely apologizes for any offense caused by it and extends its apology to all talents and partners.

Balenciaga also condemned a recent campaign featuring children cuddling teddy bears in fetish clothes and addressed the outrage.

The company stated that they strongly condemn child abuse and did not intend to include it in its narrative. Our plush bear bags and Gift collection should not be pictured with children. Balenciaga made a mistake by including images that were not validated and assessed. Balenciaga is responsible for all of this.

Kim Kardashian, who was a fashion brand ambassador, addressed the crowd Sunday after she received a flood of messages and comments urging her not to endorse the label.

Kardashian stated that she is “reevaluating” her relationship with Balenciaga and that she was “shaken” by the disturbing images.

She told her 74.2 million followers on Twitter that “the safety of children must always be considered and any attempts at normalizing child abuse should not be tolerated.”

Balenciaga had previously apologized for the campaign and said it had “immediately deleted the campaign from all platforms”.

Gabriele Galimberti, the photographer, stated last week that he was not responsible for the direction or shooting of the campaign featuring the Teddy Bears.

“I am not in the position to comment on Balenciaga’s choices, but I must stress, I wasn’t entitled in any manner to either choose (sic), the products or the models or the combination thereof… As usual, the direction and shooting of the campaign are not in the hands of the photographer.”

North Six and Nicholas Des Jardins LLC representatives both denied being involved in the plush bear campaign.

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