Comedian Shane Gillis announces partnership with Bud Light after transgender marketing debacle

News & Politics

Comedian Shane Gillis said that he agreed to a marketing partnership with the embattled Bud Light brand after its transgender debacle that involved a national boycott.

“Excited to announce partnership with Bud Light,” wrote the comedian on his Instagram social media account. He added photos of himself at a brewery with a Bud Light cap.

The Bud Light brand was severely damaged after transgender activist Dylan Mulvaney announced in April 2023 a partnership with the beer company for its “March Madness” marketing campaign. Mulvaney showed off a beer can design with the activist’s visage, though the design was never sold publicly.

Critics immediately lambasted the brand for appearing to turn its back on the traditional demographic who drank Bud Light. Anheuser-Busch, the parent company of Bud Light, lost billions in market capitalization and was knocked off its pedestal as the most popular beer brand in the U.S.

Some have defended Bud Light — like Joe Rogan, who said in one podcast that the company was merely trying to extend its market audience, and UFC CEO Dana White, who argued that the company hires a lot of working-class people and does a lot of good for the U.S.

Gillis has 1.2 million followers on his Instagram account. Some of his followers on Instagram applauded him for the partnership while others accused him of selling out to corporate interests.

The 36-year-old comedian faced politically correct cancellation himself. In 2019, he was picked to be a cast member on “Saturday Night Live” until an online campaign pressured the show to drop him over culturally insensitive comments he had made on a podcast.

“I’m happy to apologize to anyone who’s actually offended by anything I’ve said,” he said at the time. “My intention is never to hurt anyone but I am trying to be the best comedian I can be and sometimes that requires risks.”

Here’s more about the Bud Light debacle:

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