Italian airline apologizes for ad with Obama impersonator in blackface
Italian airline Alitalia has apologized for an ad featuring a man in blackface portraying President ..
Italian airline Alitalia has apologized for an ad featuring a man in blackface portraying President Barack Obama.
The carrier was using the online videos to advertise new flights from Italy to Washington, DC. Each spot featured actors portraying US presidents Abraham Lincoln, George Washington, Donald Trump and Obama.
The Obama-portraying actor — an Italian of Tunisian descent — was covered in black and brown makeup for the video shoot, Aljazeera reported. His nose was also enlarged and his mouth and lips were changed for the video.
The airline originally defended the video, telling The New York Times on Wednesday that the makeup was applied to the actors face to highlight his existing features.
In a statement on Twitter later Wednesday, Alitalia reversed course, apologized and said it was not its intention to offend anyone with the advertisement.