Cadillac distanced itself from a casting call placed by The Cast Station for an “alt-right (neo-nazi)” role in a “Real People” Cadillac commercial on Saturday, seeking “REAL Alt-Right believers/thinkers,” following widespread backlash when the casting call circulated on social media, Reuters reported. Gizmodo pointed out that the casting call made sure to address “Real Alt-Right thinkers!” of “All Ethnicities” between the ages of 20 and 40.
In the statement, posted to Facebook, Cadillac wrote:
Cadillac did not authorize or approve a casting notice for an ‘alt-right (neo-nazi)’ role in a commercial. We unequivocally condemn the notice and are seeking immediate answers from our creative agency, production company and any casting companies involved.
Before reference to the casting call was completely removed, it seems to have been replaced by a message changing the original wording to “Real alt-right protestors” for the “historical reenactment” in the “beautiful artistic spot that is captureing [sic] all walks of life of America” — at least according to a screen capture posted to Twitter by actor and dancer Samantha Tan. This version of the casting call also seems to have included the message, “But people are so sensitive so just take it down.”
— Samantha Tan (@Samantha_Tan) December 12, 2016
The Cast Station issued an apology via Facebook, stating that the single employee responsible for the “mistake” had subsequently been fired. That statement read:
A casting notice for an “alt-right” role in a Cadillac commercial was issued by mistake on Friday, Dec 9th. The notice was drafted by an employee, who was immediately terminated for her actions. Additionally an outside third party further altered the breakdown without our knowledge and posted it on social media. Cadillac unequivocally did not authorize this notice or anything like it, and we apologize to Cadillac for the ex-employee’s actions.
It’s unclear how exactly the casting call was “altered” by “an outside third party” and The Cast Station has thus far not responded to our requests for comment.
An anonymous source identified the employee referenced in The Cast Station’s message as New York, Chicago and Atlanta casting director Skylar Rote. We reached out to Rote via phone and social media but have yet to receive a reply, with calls going directly to voicemail.
Publicis has served as Cadillac’s agency of record since December of 2014, when it won the account following a review launched that September. This April, Publicis New York hired former Arnold executive creative director Andy Clarke to lead the Cadillac account. We reached out to Publicis and Clarke for comment, but they have yet to provide a statement as of time of publication.
Independent Media has worked with Publicis and Cadillac in the past, but we were unable to confirm that the production company had any involvement in the spot as they also have yet to reply to our requests for comment.