Kanye West and Annie Leibovitz have issued a joint statement after Kanye made headlines for claiming Annie quit as his wedding photographer at the last moment.
The statement reads, "Kanye West’s comments about Annie Leibovitz while speaking at the 2014 Cannes Lions International Advertising Festival have been taken out of context and sensationalized.” Some of his comments were sensationalized (some sites claimed he called her out and bashed her), but the entirety of his comments were available. He said during Cannes Lions, "This is pissing my girl off during the honeymoon... Annie Leibovitz pulled out right before the wedding—maybe she was scared about the idea of celebrity.” To say his direct quote is being taken out of context is a bit disingenuous.
The statement continues, "Although Kanye expressed frustration that he was not able to collaborate with Annie Leibovitz at his recent wedding, he is not assigning blame, and is not accusing Annie in any way. Kanye and Annie’s representatives were in negotiations for weeks that were not completed by the time of the wedding." Again, Kanye said “Annie pulled out right before the wedding” at the event. Annie's rep said in the statement, "Annie would have been happy to do the portrait but she was never confirmed."
The joint statement concluded, "It was Kanye’s dream to bring together for the wedding his favorite creatives – Riccardo Tisci on the dress, Vanessa Beecroft on the experience, and Andrea Bocelli – Kim’s favorite singer - singing Kim’s favorite song as she walked down the aisle," the joint explanation continued. "The first choice to capture one of the most special days in Kim and Kanye’s life: Annie Leibovitz.
"Annie Leibovitz – the legendary photographer responsible for Kim and Kanye’s recent Vogue cover – is not known to shoot weddings. But Kanye West dreams big. He loves and respects Annie as a true artist and wanted to bring her eye for beauty to the imagery of the event."
So were Kanye's words sensationalized? Of course. However, most of the media was not putting words in his mout, nor taking him out of context.
Annie did the photoshoot for Kim and Kanye's Vogue cover, so there is a working relationship that probably led to the joint statement.
The photo in question, which Kanye claims took 4 days to perfect, has become the most liked and commented-on photo in Instagram's history.