Fresh off a triumphant couture collection inspired by René Gruau and only days before Paris Fashion Week begins, John Galliano has had his world turned upside down by allegations that he made anti-Semitic and racist remarks and assaulted a couple in a Paris cafe. After the Thursday night altercation, the designer was briefly arrested and then escorted home by police, who did not press charges. However, LVMH-owned Christian Dior wasted no time in suspending its longtime creative director. “The House of Dior declares with the greatest firmness its policy of zero tolerance with regard to any antisemitic or racist statement or attitude,” said Dior president and CEO Sidney Toledano in a statement.
The couple involved in the incident filed charges against Galliano, who proceeded to sue them for defamation. Meanwhile, the controversy didn’t deter Galliano devotee Nicole Kidman or Sharon Stone, a face of Dior Beauty (and someone whose own culturally insensitive remarks got her in trouble with the brand a few years back), from wearing Dior gowns on last night’s Oscar red carpet. Neither actress would comment on the situation. Whether Galliano’s fall ready-to-wear collections for Dior or his own label will hit the runway this week remains anyone’s guess, but the plot thickens. Today a second complaint was filed with the Paris police. According to WWD, a woman claims she was verbally attacked by the designer earlier this month at the same Marais cafe, which is near Galliano’s home.