The owner of a pizza and chicken restaurant in Idaho is apologizing after his homemade Facebook video advertising the weekend specials caused outrage because it featured him in blackface. He was also dressed as a shark.
Brad Breakell, the owner of Pizzalchik in Northwest Boise, told local news station KBOI on Tuesday that he meant for his face, which was painted black for the video, to look like the wide open mouth of his latest creation, a shark character he dubbed Jacklyn Jaws.
He told the station he never meant any harm.
“There was no intent of being blackface,” Breakell said. “People said ‘Do you know what blackface is?’ Of course I know what blackface is but because I’m so not that way it didn’t even cross my mind.”
Although he’s since deleted the video, he said his children have gotten harassing phone calls and restaurant staff have fielded phone orders for “hundreds and hundreds of dollars of pizza with no intent to pick any of this stuff up.”
The Facebook page for the restaurant features other off-the-wall videos of Breakell dressed up as characters for Mardi Gras, President [sic] Day, and National Tortilla Day. Breakell posted a video on Monday apologizing for the latest video, saying the response has left him “hurt and saddened.”
“This is about peace, music, love, and pizza,” he told KBOI.