Amy Schumer felt an explanation was necessary after people were offended by a music video she released to the tune of
The video, which was shot this summer while Schumer was shooting a movie, includes the comedian, her costar Goldie Hawn, comedian Wanda Sykes, and others from the film’s production dancing and lip-syncing to Beyoncé’s song.
According to the A.V. Club, people on social media accused Schumer of “cultural appropriation and of being disrespectful to the racial politics at the heart of the song … ‘Formation’ is about Beyoncé’s experiences as a black woman and the experiences of black women in general.”
In response to the controversy, Schumer said she was inspired and empowered by “Formation” and didn’t mean to diminish any of the song’s meaning.
“I love how in the lyrics of ‘Formation’ Beyoncé is telling us to get in formation,” Schumer wrote in a new essay on Medium. “And also I like to think she is telling us ladies to get information. I did not mean to detract any of the meaning from the video. I am of course horrified and sickened by the events that are addressed throughout that video and didn’t see this as minimising that and still don’t.”
She went on to say of the video, “It was NEVER a parody. It was just us women celebrating each other. The video Beyoncé made was so moving and I wouldn’t ever make fun of that. There is absolutely no way to. I make fun of myself a few times in the video as I do in everything I am a part of. I loved every second of working with those women to make this thing that lifted us up.”
Possibly Schumer’s most effective defence was the fact that she not only had Jay Z and Beyoncé’s blessing on the video, but that Jay Z’s Tidal had it for 24 hours exclusively before it was released to the general public.
Watch Schumer’s take on “Formation” below: