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Model Gigi Hadid Trashed Online Again After New Controversy, ‘Why Not Get a Black Model’

Three years after her last blackface controversy, model Gigi Hadid has been thrust into another one and she’s addressed concerns amid the backlash.

On Thursday, May 3, the 23-year-old proudly shared her Vogue Italia cover on Instagram. According to Us Weekly, she wrote in a now-deleted post, “Excited and honored, and grateful to cover @VogueItalia’s May issue. She also thanked the behind-the-scenes team for the “amazing” shoot.

But fans quickly zeroed in on the fact that the usually paler model was noticeably tan and questioned why she appeared that way.

“This is Horrible… blackface gone wrong… why not get Black model instead of doing this to poor @gigihadid,” one person said.

gigi hadid

“Did they [seriously] try to make her…Black?” another commented.

“Why the blackface tho?” someone asked.

Another remarked, “Disgusting face, disgusting blackface…. shame.”

Still, a few said there was no racist photoshopping at work.

“Everyone needs to calm the f— down,” someone said.

“Put a bronzed model on the cover =blackface..come onnn 🙄,” another wrote sarcastically.

After feeling the heat, Hadid posted the following on Twitter Thursday.

“This is a photo of me returning home from shooting my Italian Vogue cover on April 3rd…you can see the level I had been bronzed to on set that day,” she said. “Please understand that my control of a shoot 1. is non-existent in terms of creative direction. 2. ends completely when I leave set, and anything done to a photo in post is out of my control fully.”

Hadid then spoke to photographer Steven Klein’s penchant for darkening photo subjects, something that led to controversy last year when he shot Kim Kardashian’s Jackie O-inspired pictures for “Interview” magazine.

“The bronzing and photoshop is a style that S. Klein has done for many years and I believe was what was expected from the shoot (to show me in a different way creatively), BUT, although I understand what Vogue Italia’s intentions were, it was not executed correctly, and the concerns that have been brought up are valid,” she wrote.

“I want to address this for those who were offended by the editing/retouching/coloring of the cover,” she continued. “Please know that things would have been different if my control of the situation was different. Regardless, I want to apologize because my intention is never to diminish those concerns or take opportunities away from anyone else, and I hope this can be an example to other magazines and teams in the future.”

Hadid concluded by remarking on the importance of acknowledging such issues and work toward increasing diversity in the modeling industry.

However, while fans said she didn’t need to say sorry, her apology didn’t go over well for others. A couple of people even called out Hadid’s 2015 Vogue Italia cover shoot, where she had an Afro and tanned skin.

Vogue Italia has also issued a statement telling E! News it “has always respected and even encouraged the viewpoint of commissioned photographers. Needless to say, this is the case with the latest shoot by Steven Klein, a creative whose vision has had an impact in shaping the path of our publication. Fashion photography, and Vogue Italia’s, in particular, is an interpretation of reality, not a literal representation of it, and this creative approach applies to the cover of the May issue.”

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