Domenico Dolce and Stefano Gabbana, the co-founders of fashion company Dolce & Gabbana, have finally apologized for a series of advertisements deemed “racist.”
The controversy began earlier this month when the fashion brand posted a series of videos to its official page on Weibo, a Chinese version of Twitter. In the ads, an Asian model playfully attempts to use chopsticks to eat pizza and other Italian food. Many Chinese social media users called the videos, which have since been deleted, racist and full of outdated stereotypes.
Dolce and Gabbana, sitting side-by-side in long-sleeved black shirts, their hands resting on a table, apologized in a nearly 1.5-minute video posted online Friday.
“We have always been in love with China,” Dolce said, according to a translation. “We love your culture and we certainly have much to learn. That is why we are sorry if we made mistakes in the way we expressed ourselves.”
“We will never forget this experience, and it will certainly never happen again,” Gabbana said, adding, “From the bottom of our hearts, we ask for forgiveness.”
The designers concluded the video by saying “sorry” in Chinese.
Earlier this week, Dolce and Gabbana canceled a major fashion show in Shanghai as the hashtag #BoycottDolceGabbana was trending. The company had billed "The Great Show” as one of its biggest ever outside of Italy.
In an initial statement, Dolce and Gabbana said their “dream was to bring to Shanghai a tribute event dedicated to China.”
“It was not simply a fashion show, but something that we created especially with love and passion for China and all the people around the world who love Dolce & Gabbana,” they said. “What happened today was very unfortunate not only for us, but also for all the people who worked day and night to bring this event to life. From the bottom of our hearts, we would like to express our gratitude to our friends and guests.”
Multiple stores, including Lane Crawford in Hong Kong, have stopped selling Dolce & Gabbana merchandise. Their products have also disappeared from major Chinese e-commerce sites.
Fox News' Janine Puhak and The Associated Press contributed to this report.