Comedian Kathy Griffin has lost a major endorsement deal after sharing online a graphic photo showing her holding the likeness of the severed and bloodied head of President Donald Trump. The image was shared in a video uploaded on Tuesday, May 30, to the website of the controversial photographer Tyler Shields who reportedly took the photo.
Griffin suffered a furious backlash on social media immediately after the disturbing image appeared online, and late on Tuesday, Squatty Potty announced it was cutting ties with the comedienne by canceling the company’s endorsement deal with her. Squatty Potty CEO Bobby Edwards said a statement that the company was pulling its new ads featuring the actress.
“We were shocked and disappointed to learn about the image Ms. Griffin shared today, it was deeply inappropriate and runs contrary to the core values our company stands for,” Edwards said in the statement, according to Us Weekly. “In response, Squatty Potty has suspended its ad campaign featuring Ms. Griffin.”
“We have acted swiftly and decisively to demonstrate our commitment to a culture of decency, civility, and tolerance.”
Squatty Potty first announced its endorsement deal with Griffin earlier this month. The company released a commercial of Griffin endorsing the company’s line of toilet footstools which are designed to help people keep their feet up when they sit on the toilet.
The product was launched on Shark Tank in 2014.
— Franklin Graham (@Franklin_Graham) May 31, 2017
Hours after Griffin’s gory image was posted online, Griffin responded to the furious backlash on social media by releasing a video on her Twitter account in which she offered a groveling apologized for the image.
“I sincerely apologize. I’m just now seeing the reaction to these images. I’m a comic. I cross the line. I move the line then I cross it. I went way too far,” she said in the video. “The image is too disturbing. I understand how it offends people. It wasn’t funny. I get it.”
“I’ve made a lot of mistakes in my career, I will continue. I ask your forgiveness.”
I am sorry. I went too far. I was wrong. pic.twitter.com/LBKvqf9xFB
— Kathy Griffin (@kathygriffin) May 30, 2017
President Trump also took to Twitter at about 7:30 a.m. on Wednesday to condemn the actress’s action. He expressed his disgust on Twitter and described the photo as “sick.” He said his 11-year-old son Barron was traumatized by the image.
“Kathy Griffin should be ashamed of herself. My children, especially my 11 year old son, Barron, are having a hard time with this. Sick!”
Kathy Griffin should be ashamed of herself. My children, especially my 11 year old son, Barron, are having a hard time with this. Sick!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) May 31, 2017
TMZ reported that sources close to the Trump family said Barron Trump first saw the gory image on TV after watching a show. The news came on after the show and an image of Griffin holding the bloodied likeness of his father’s head appeared on the screen. Barron’s initial impression was that Griffin had actually killed and decapitated his father, according to TMZ.
He reportedly screamed, calling his mother.
“He’s 11. He doesn’t know who Kathy Griffin is and the head she was holding resembled his dad.”
Melania Trump also reportedly lashed out at Griffin, saying that the photo was disgusting. She wondered whether something had gone wrong “with [Kathy’s] mental health.”
Donald Trump Jr. also took to social media to express his disappointment. He rejected Griffin’s apology, describing it as “phony.”
“Disgusting but not surprising. This is the left today. They consider this acceptable.”
Disgusting but not surprising. This is the left today. They consider this acceptable. Imagine a conservative did this to Obama as POTUS? https://t.co/QdghcbIjS7
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) May 30, 2017
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) May 31, 2017
The #kathygriffin phony apology would be a lot easier to believe if there wasn't a video of her mocking the response she knew was coming.
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) May 31, 2017
“The #kathygriffin phony apology would be a lot easier to believe if there wasn’t a video of her mocking the response she knew was coming.”
Donald Trump Jr.’s comment was in reference to a video in which Griffin reportedly joked with photographer Tyler Shields that the backlash when she releases the image to the public could force her to flee to Mexico.
Trump Jr. also called on CNN to remove Griffin from her role in the network’s New Year’s Eve coverage.
CNN later released a statement describing the image as “disgusting and offensive.” The network added that it was considering an appropriate response, but said a decision had not been taken.
— ABC News (@ABC) May 30, 2017
— NBC New York (@NBCNewYork) May 30, 2017
Griffin’s New Year’s Eve co-host, Anderson Cooper, also lashed out in condemnation of the photo shoot. He said Griffin’s action was “clearly disgusting and completely inappropriate.”
After Squatty Potty announced it was canceling its endorsement deal with Griffin, Albuquerque’s Route 66 Casino also tweeted that her upcoming gig at the casino in July had been canceled, according to Ad Age.
The July 22nd performance by Kathy Griffin has been cancelled.
— Route 66 Casino (@RT66CasinoHotel) May 30, 2017
Griffin’s loss of an endorsement deal and a gig comes after she lamented in an interview with Ad Age that her commercial endorsement deal opportunities were drying up. She previously had an endorsement deal with Target and Kotex.
“It’s like the Squatty Potty is the final bachelor, and after fighting with all the b***hes in the house I finally end up with the rose.”
[Featured Image by Emma McIntyre/Getty Images]