Tuesday, September 30, 2014

Coco Martin is sorry for walking a leashed female model at 'Bench: The Naked Truth' show

Coco Martin's lawyer, Atty. Lorna Kapunan, delivered a press statement on Tuesday morning regarding the actor's controversial stint at the recently-held "Bench: The Naked Truth Denim & Underwear Show."

Some women's rights groups were offended by the act where the "Ikaw Lamang" lead actor was seen walking the runway holding a leashed female model who, in turn, walked like a pet. Gabriela's Liza Maza even took to Facebook to describe the act as a "degrading and dehumanizing portrayal of women."

According to Kapunan's statement, Coco, "nor his manager or staff, was not involved in the conceptualization" of the show's segment titled "The Animal Within Me" where he appeared as a ring master.

The lawyer also mentioned that the actor, who only rehearsed once, "wanted to voice out his concern, particularly with the leash strapped on the neck of the lady model, but he failed to successfully communicate his thought because of the language barrier" as most of the people on the stage during the rehearsal, including the choreographer, were foreigners.

"Mr. Martin feels extremely sorry for what transpired and admitted that this incident taught him a major lesson to be more sensitive and mindful of the repercussions of his portrayals," Kapunan continued.

Coco also assured the public "that he will no longer allow himself to be obliged to participate in a similar insensitive portrayal."

Here's a photo of the Press Statement courtesy of Eric John Salut's Instagram:

Press Statement delivered by Atty. Lorna Kapunan re Coco Martin and the The Naked Truth issue

Meanwhile, Bench's Ben Chan himself took to Instagram on Sunday to apologize to Coco.

"It has never been the intent of Bench to offend anyone in presenting The Naked Truth Show. Coco Martin was asked to portray a character in a circus scene of our theatre show, and only played the role given him. This is to apologise to Coco Martin for involving him in the controversial scene. More importantly, we also apologise for offending the sensitivities of some persons. We assure you that we shall always endeavor to uphold the dignity of people," he said.

Days earlier, Bench also released a statement apologizing to the public regarding the issue and said that it will be a lesson learned.

"We at Bench apologize to the public for all the offensive elements of the show, 'The Naked Truth,'" the brand said in the statement it posted on Instagram on Tuesday. "We will take all these concerns seriously and will serve as a lesson learned when we plan our next show."

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