Isla Fisher tried her best to have friend Julianne Hough’s back.
When the Dancing With the Stars pro showed up to a pre-Halloween party in an ill-advised costume that included blackface, Isla tried to give Julianne a heads up that the costume wasn’t such a good idea.
The costume was supposed to be the character Crazy Eyes from the television show Orange Is the New Black, and Julianne Hough went all out. Her costume included an orange prison jumpsuit, a braided hair-do, and darkened skin.
Isla was reportedly “mortified” when she saw the costume and told Julianne she should “go to the bathroom and wipe her face off,” a source told Us Weekly.
“Isla hoped she got to Julianne before photos were taken,” the source added.
But Isla Fisher was too late. Julianne was already captured by a photographer, and the picture quickly went viral. It led to outrage on Twitter and a backlash so intense that Hough issued a public apology.
“I am a huge fan of the show Orange is the New Black, actress Uzo Aduba, and the character she has created,” she said. “It certainly was never my intention to be disrespectful or demeaning to anyone in any way. I realize my costume hurt and offended people and I truly apologize.”
Even Orange is the New Black actress Laverne Cox spoke out, saying she wasn’t mad at Julianne though she was a bit amazed that she didn’t understand why it would be offensive.
“I wasn’t offended,” Cox said after the incident. “I thought it was a shame that she is in this country, that she would wear blackface and not understand the historical implications of that. I don’t think Julianne is making a specific informed choice to comment on blackness. I just think it’s out of this ignorance. That’s really sad.”
If only she had listened to Isla Fisher at the party.