Protest planned over Idol’s “double standard” between Antonella and Frenchie, who wants “a public apology”

Reaction to the photographs of Antonella Barba has led ousted season two contestant Frenchie Davis to ask for “a public apology” from the show’s producers about the way they treated her.

Frenchie, who was removed from the competition because she’d once worked for a pornographic web site, went on to work for Entertainment Tonight and act in a production of Dreamgirls.

“I had stopped watching ‘American Idol’, and I’ve tried to avoid even speaking about or thinking about what happened four years ago. But I couldn’t help but overhear what was happening with Antonella. I couldn’t help but notice the manner in which she was dealt with was the complete opposite of how I was dealt with,” Frenchie tells EURweb.

While at first “joking that the network could write her a check,” as EURweb reports, Frenchie later said through her representative that the show’s producers could begin with “issuing her a public apology and then she would negotiate with them from there.”

Although the site’s story assumes the more graphic sexual photos of Antonella are real, which her best friend denies, the show’s hypocrisy is clear: Frenchie notes now, as she did then, that she’d previously told the show’s producers about her past, and says that her pictures weren’t widely distributed. Nor did the show’s judges and host speak publicly in support of Frenchie, as they did with Antonella. And EURweb says that “Davis is plus size, Barba is thin; and then there’s the fact that Davis is black, Barba is white.”

A rally will be held to make that point tomorrow at 11 a.m. at the Kodak Theatre in Hollywood, and will be attended by activist Najee Ali and others, including “season one ‘Idol’ Producer Tarvenia Jones, Frenchie Davis (by phone), and Belinda Foster, manager of Frenchie Davis,” according to EURweb.

‘American Idol’ Double Exposure Double Standard and Anti ‘American Idol’ Rally Planned to Support Frenchie Davis [EURweb]

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about the writer

Andy Dehnart is a journalist who has covered reality television for more than 15 years and created reality blurred in 2000. A member of the Television Critics Association, his writing and criticism about television, culture, and media has appeared on NPR and in Playboy, Buzzfeed, and many other publications. Andy, 36, also directs the journalism program at Stetson University in Florida, where he teaches creative nonfiction and journalism. He has an M.F.A. in nonfiction writing and literature from Bennington College. More about reality blurred and Andy.