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Vanity Fair edits Palestine pin from Guy Pearce photo at Cannes

Vanity Fair 'sorry' for removing Palestine flag pin from Guy Pearce photo at Cannes
3 min read
28 May, 2024
The magazine said it published the photoshopped image by mistake after criticism of what was interpreted as deliberate erasure of Palestinian solidarity.
The Australian actor sported a Palestinian flag pin and bracelet with the flag's colours at Cannes [Getty/file photo[

The French edition of Vanity Fair magazine has apologised for digitally removing a Palestinian flag pin worn by Australian actor Guy Pearce, in a photograph posted on its website last week.

In the image, taken as part of Vanity Fair's portraiture series, the award-winning actor was seen posing in a black Yves Saint-Laurent tuxedo during the Cannes Film Festival, currently taking place in southern France.

Alongside the pin, Pearce was also seen wearing a bracelet made from strings with the Palestinian flag’s colours.

In the original photograph, the actor can be seen sporting the Palestinian flag pin on the left lapel of his tuxedo. However, on the French magazine’s website, the pin was visibly absent from the image.

The magazine did not digitally remove the bracelet - with some speculating that it was perhaps because it did not appear as obvious a symbol of pro-Palestinian solidarity.

The French subsidiary of the US magazine subsequently apologised, and said they published the modified image "by mistake" and that they had "rectified their error".

The photoshopping of the Palestine pin was criticised by social media users.

One X user, Aya, said: "This is what we call cultural erasure. Vanity Fair made no mistake or error as they claim. They consciously and purposefully edited out the Palestinian flag."

Another user said: "This is what you get for supporting Palestine. Shame, shame on you Vanity Fair France."

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Several celebrities have shown pro-Palestinian solidarity amid Israel's war in Gaza at the international film festival, despite Cannes pre-emptively banning protests during the 11-day event.

Palestinian-American model Bella Hadid wore a dress inspired by the emblematic keffiyeh last week, with the dress itself being a 2001 archive piece designed by the New York-based brand Michael & Hush.

Hadid, daughter of Palestinian real estate developer and Nakba survivor Mohamed Hadid, has frequently used her celebrity status to spotlight the Palestinian cause and culture, despite threats from pro-Israeli groups.

Also last week, Australian actress Cate Blanchett wore a dress encompassing most of the Palestinian flag’s colours and deliberately lifted up the dress’ green inner lining against the colour of the red carpet.

Other actors and actresses have been seen sporting other symbols of Palestinian solidarity, including keffiyeh-inspired bow ties and watermelon-shaped accessories.

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Israel has been carrying out a nearly eight-month indiscriminate attack on the Gaza Strip, totally devastating the territory and killing at least 36,096 Palestinians as of Tuesday, mostly women and children.

On Sunday, the Israeli military bombed a tent for displaced people in the southern city of Rafah, killing at least 45 people. The Israeli missiles set the tent ablaze, burning Palestinians alive. The incident has sparked international outrage.