Victoria’s Secret Fashion Show Announces Return With 'New Version' After 4-Year Hiatus
The Victoria's Secret Fashion Show is coming back with an all-new version of their beloved runway show.
During the company's 2022 earnings call on Friday, chief financial officer Timothy Johnson announced that the fashion show will be making its return. Retail Dive was the first outlet to cover the update.
"We're going to continue to lean into the marketing spend to invest in the business, both at top-of-funnel and also to support the new version of our fashion show, which is to come later this year," Johnson said.
Victoria's Secret's return to the runway comes four years after the show was canceled in Nov. 2019 amid controversy surrounding the relationship between former brand CEO Les Wexner and Jeffrey Epstein and growing criticism of the brand's lack of diversity and inclusion.
The company also faced backlash in Feb. 2020 after a report published by The New York Times accused the brand's former officer Ed Razek of sexual harassment, bullying and creating a culture of misogyny.
Razek denied the allegations at the time, telling the outlet in an email that "the accusations in this reporting are categorically untrue, misconstrued or taken out of context," adding, "I've been fortunate to work with countless, world-class models and gifted professionals and take great pride in the mutual respect we have for each other."
The annual fashion show was first held in August 1995 and ran 23 more times in the years to follow -- with the exception of 2004.
During its two-decade run, the show featured performances from the likes of The Weeknd, Katy Perry, Maroon 5, Jay-Z, Kanye West, Taylor Swift, Harry Styles, Ariana Grande, Ed Sheeran, Rihanna, Justin Bieber, Bruno Mars, Destiny's Child, Usher, Justin Timberlake, and more -- a practice that started when the brand began incorporating a performance element to the runway shows back in 2001.
In July, Hulu released a docuseries about the brand, titled, Victoria’s Secret: Angels and Demons, which tells the story of the lingerie company’s rise and fall – and its unexpected connections to Epstein.
Directed by Matt Tyrnauer, the three-part series took a closer look at how Wexner, the brand's longtime CEO -- and the same man behind Abercrombie & Fitch – created the multi-billion-dollar mall brand and how Victoria’s Secret became intertwined with Epstein, with whom Wexner had a close relationship with before he was arrested on sexual assault charges.
The doc also shed a light on the brand's long history of body-shaming under Wexner and the marketing used to make consumers feel bad about themselves.
In a statement shared with People at the time, a VS spokesperson told the outlet that the doc does not reflect the company Victoria's Secret is today.
"The company featured in this docuseries does not reflect today's Victoria's Secret & Co. When we became a stand-alone company in August 2021, we set out to regain the trust of our customers, associates and partners," the spokesperson shared.
They continued, "Today, we are proud to be a different company, with a new leadership team and mission to welcome, celebrate, and champion all women. This transformation is a journey, and our work continues to become the Victoria's Secret our customers and associates deserve -- where everyone feels seen, respected, and valued."
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