Dior axes Galliano over 'odious' tirade
THE fashion house Christian Dior yesterday fired its chief designer, John Galliano, for what it described as "particularly odious" remarks glorifying Adolf Hitler and the Holocaust.
The French label said that it had started formal procedures to sack Mr Galliano (50) after studying words and drunken behaviour on a video "which totally contradict the essential values that we always uphold".
The dismissal of the much-admired British designer, after 15 years as the main artistic force at Dior, sent shockwaves through the fashion world.
Earlier, the Jewish-American actress, Natalie Portman, the winner of an Oscar on Sunday and the commercial face of Miss Dior perfumes, said that she never wished to work with Mr Galliano again.
Some French fashion sources suggested that Dior had been unhappy with Mr Galliano's erratic behaviour for some time and that the house was pleased to have a chance to fire him.
Other fashion industry officials in Paris said that Dior would be devastated to lose Mr Galliano's creative genius and distressed to have run into such a storm in the middle of Paris Fashion Week.
The designer was suspended by Dior last Friday after allegedly making anti-semitic and racist remarks to a couple in a bar.
A mobile telephone video showed Mr Galliano giving virulent racial abuse to other customers in the same Paris bar in December. The short video starts in mid-argument. A woman asks: "Don't you want peace between nations... Are you blond, with blue eyes?"
Mr Galliano, wearing a large, felt hat, replies, with deeply slurred words: "No, but I love Hitler, and people like you would be dead today.
"Your mothers, your forefathers, would be ... gassed and ... dead." (© Independent News Service)