Kanye “Ye” West allegedly “showed an intimate photograph of Kim Kardashian in job interviews” during his Yeezy partnership with Adidas, according to a new report by Rolling Stone. In the month since Adidas severed ties with West, 45, over his antisemitic comments, RS reports that more than two dozen former Yeezy and Adidas staffers have come forth to accuse the disgraced rapper of using “mind games,” pornography, and bullying as a way to exert control over the staff.
One such alleged incident occurred in 2018 when West met with a “young creative” who considered the meeting a job interview. After discovering Ye “dancing around to his own music on full blast,” the young creative allegedly watched as Ye pulled out his cell phone. “My wife just sent me this,” West said, according to the creative, who told RS that it was a “very revealing and personal” photo of Kim Kardashian. RS also claims that at least one other time in 2018, “West showed an explicit video of Kardashian to members of the creative team at Yeezy, according to a person who says they saw the video.”
The report claims that Ye cited porn as an inspirational tool. Ye allegedly told the Yeezy staff “on more than one occasion” that if they were ever “stuck creatively, just watch porn for 10 minutes.”
HollywoodLife has reached out to Adidas regarding the new accusations against Kanye. A rep for the brand sent us the following statement: “Adidas does not tolerate hate speech and offensive behavior and therefore has terminated the Adidas Yeezy partnership. We have been and continue to be actively engaged in conversations with our employees about the events that led to our decision to end the partnership. They have our full support and as we’re working through the details of the termination, we have been clear that we want to keep our employees’ talent and skills within the organization. Having said this, we will not discuss private conversations, details, or events that lead to our decision to terminate the Adidas Yeezy partnership and decline to comment on any related speculation.”
The alleged behavior described in the report matches something West shared in October. Ye published a 30-minute documentary, including a scene where he allegedly showed an explicit movie to a high-ranking Adidas member to describe how he was going to be “your worst nightmare.” Ye told the executives in the video, “What you’re feeling right now is extreme discomfort, and that is exactly the point.”
Rolling Stone also reports that “a revelatory, open letter by prominent former members of the Yeezy team insists that leaders from Adidas were aware of West’s ‘problematic behavior’ but “turned their moral compass off.” Several former high-ranking Yeezy employees sent the letter on Tuesday to the Adidas executive board members and the newly installed CEO. RS claims to have obtained the letter, which reads, “[Ye] has, in years past, exploded at women in the room with offensive remarks and would resort to sexually disturbing references when providing design feedback.”
“I never looked at porn with him or anything like that, but we would look at things together that maybe would be surprising to people,” Pete Fox, who served as president of Yeezy in 2016, told Rolling Stone. Fox was the only person who agreed to go on the record with his name for the RS article. “In high fashion, there’s a lot of sexy, controversial things that maybe they reference or look at, as opposed to a company like Adidas where you would never show any nudity in a mood board,” he said.
However, many former staffers accused West of playing “mind games” at Yeezy. He allegedly made a young female designer of color sit on the floor for a meeting that lasted for hours. “‘You don’t deserve to sit at the table,’” West allegedly said.
“No wonder why he didn’t want senior business managers in the room,” the open letter alleges, per RS. “He wanted to continue to use his power to violate you in a quiet way and threaten your role and existence within the team.”
HollywoodLife also reached out to Kanye’s rep, as well as his attorney. We have not heard back from either.