Bud Light partnered with right-leaning comedian Shane Gillis as part of its rebranding effort in the wake of its near-catastrophic partnership with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.
The company announced its partnership with Gillis in a post on Instagram.
“Welcome to the team @shanemgillis, excited to be a part of your 2024 tour,” the company said.
“Excited to announce partnership with Bud Light #budlightpartner,” Gillis confirmed on his Instagram account.
Gillis was fired from NBC’s Saturday Night Live in 2019 after years-old jokes in which he used slurs against Asians and gays resurfaced and went viral online.
The partnership comes after Bud Light became the UFC’s official beer to rehabilitate its image, which was followed by Kid Rock formally canceling his boycott of the company with a call for forgiveness.
“So, do I want to hold their head underwater and drown them because they made a mistake? No, I think they got the message,” Kid Rock told Tucker Carlson in a recent interview.
“As a God-fearing man, as a Christian, I have to believe in forgiveness,” he previously told Sean Hannity.
Ep. 48 The Tucker Carlson Encounter: Kid Rock pic.twitter.com/g9wLg1zlvu
— Tucker Carlson (@TuckerCarlson) December 11, 2023
UFC CEO Dana White echoed those same sentiments.
“These guys employ 65,000 Americans, thousands of vets they employ. They spend over $700 million a year with U.S. farmers, you know, buying their crops for their product. And there’s many, many other reasons that I did this,” White said.
“Where I sit personally with my core values and I felt like the core values of the UFC, even though we’re a global sport, and we have fighters from all over the world. This is an American company. And I love this country and this is more about me being aligned with somebody who is a sponsor of the UFC and somebody I’m going to work with every day,” he added.
Bud Light became an intense lightning rod for controversy last year when it briefly partnered with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney, leading to a massive backlash. In the following months, Bud Light sales cratered while Modelo overtook the brand as America’s number-one beer.
Anheuser-Busch as well as Bud Light distributors have laid off hundreds of employees following the beer brand’s dramatic decline.
Modelo Especial overtook Bud Light as the top-selling beer in the U.S. in May as Bud Light sales were crushed by a boycott over the brand’s relationship with transgender influencer Dylan Mulvaney.
— Breitbart News (@BreitbartNews) June 14, 2023
Mulvaney addressed the backlash when receiving the award for breakout creator at the 2023 Streamy Awards.
“My life has been changed for the better but also there’s been an extreme amount of transphobia and hate and I know that my community is feeling it and I know that even our allies are feeling it,” Mulvaney said.
“I look around this room and I just see so many amazing allies that have platforms and I think allyship right now needs to look differently. You need to support trans people publicly and proudly.”
“There’s never been a brand that has been hit like this before.”
Joe Rogan, Shane Gillis, Mark Normand and Ari Shaffir debate the long term effects of the Bud Light boycott. pic.twitter.com/xxV7otgCAz
— Mythinformed (@MythinformedMKE) May 30, 2023
Anheuser-Busch sidelined Bud Light marketing VP Alissa Heinerscheid after she said the brand was “on the decline,” and suggested it and its “fratty” and “out-of-touch” approach to selling beer needed to change.
Paul Roland Bois directed the award-winning feature film, EXEMPLUM, which can be viewed for FREE on YouTube or Tubi. “Better than Killers of the Flower Moon,” wrote Mark Judge. “You haven’t seen a story like this before,” wrote Christian Toto. A high-quality, ad-free stream can also be purchased on Google Play or Vimeo on Demand. Follow him on Twitter @prolandfilms or Instagram @prolandfilms.