When Victoria's Secret angel Shanina Shaik was quoted saying the annual VS Fashion Show was no more in an interview back in July, many assumed she was referring to the fact that it would no longer be televised. However, just four months later, the brand has confirmed that the 2019 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show is officially canceled as the brand works to evolve and recreate its image.
The Fashion Show drama all started exactly a year ago, when Ed Razek, the chief marketing officer of L Brands, and Monica Mitro, the executive vice president of public relations at Victoria's Secret, gave an interview with Vogue and shocked the world with their comments regarding diversity. "Shouldn’t you have transsexuals in the show? No. No, I don’t think we should. Well, why not? Because the show is a fantasy," Razek said told the publication. The comments caused quite a bit of backlash, including a viral open letter from Heidi Zak, founder of competitor brand ThirdLove, and in May 2019, it was announced that the show would no longer be televised, after almost two decades.
Now, according to the brand's latest statement, it seems there will be no show at all:
In an interview with WWD, Stuart B. Burgdoerfer, the CFO and executive vice president of L Brands, shed some light on the situation. "[The show] was a very important part of the brand building of this business and was an important aspect of the brand and a remarkable marketing achievement," said Burgdoerfer, "And with that said, we’re figuring out how to advance the positioning of the brand and best communicate that to customers and that’s among the things that [Victoria’s Secret chief executive officer] John [Mehas] is focused on."
Model Shanina Shaik hinted at the VSFS' cancellation, but Burgdoerfer's comments mark the brand's official confirmation that the show is no more:
So, what's next for VS? Burgdoerfer says the brand will focus on sales and reworking their image. "This is a business that’s had challenges in lingerie now for three or four years and it’s going to take some time to stabilize it and get it back to where it should be," Burgdoerfer told WWD. "We believe the most important thing is the quality of the merchandise itself, the quality of our execution and selling in stores and online." If you were hoping to tune in to see the models strut their stuff on the catwalk this year, you'll just have to find something else to watch.