Just days before the 2017 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show is filmed in Shanghai for its first-ever China show, some models are allegedly experiencing last minute visa issues.
According to VOGUE Australia, four models have reportedly been denied Chinese visas to enter the country and will likely no longer make an appearance on the catwalk.
The models have been identified as Julia Belyakova, Kate Grigorieva and Irina Sharipova from Russia, and Dasha Khlystun from Ukraine. The reports appear to have been confirmed by several fan accounts on social media, according to the blog Fashionista.
Instagram fan account @VSModelSpain posted a screenshot of a conversation with the Ukrainian model confirming she would not be walking at the show:
It's unclear why the models were denied visas, but the news comes just a few weeks after a 14-year-old Russian model passed away in Shanghai, in a story that made international headlines and ignited controversy over China's modeling industry.
American tabloid The New York Post is also reporting that several international fashion bloggers are canceling their trips due to visa denials, while television producers are “on the verge of nervous breakdowns" trying to coordinate coverage.
“It’s just a nightmare for all the media trying to cover [the show],” an anonymous insider told the Post. “These TV companies are spending a fortune on it, and they don’t even know what they can shoot when they get there.”
Though no other visa rejections for models have been confirmed so far, Chinese social media users are calling for Gigi Hadid to be banned from the country after she posted a 'racist video' to her Instagram account in February. Hadid apologized for the video in September, following backlash from netizens shortly after it was announced the show would be coming to Shanghai.
"Don't come to China, because you are not welcome," wrote one commenter on an Instagram post announcing her appearance at the show.
Chinese netizens flooded Hadid's Instgram page in September, telling her not to come to China after she posted a video appearing to mock Asian people
As many as 50 models are expected to arrive for the lingerie show. Angels already confirmed include Adriana Lima, Alessandra Ambrosio, Lily Aldridge, Josephine Skriver, Behati Prinsloo, Bella Hadid (sister of Gigi), Jasmine Tookes, Candice Swanepoel, Stella Maxwell, Elsa Hosk, Lais Ribeiro, Romee Strijd, Sara Sampaio, Martha Hunt and Taylor Hill. Plenty of other new faces will also be hitting the runway for the first time at the show.
This won't be the first trip to China for some of the models, who visited Shanghai in March to celebrate the grand opening of the Shanghai flagship store. Ambrosio, Josephine Skriver, Ming Xi and Sui He posed for photos at some of the city's most iconic spots, including The Bund, the Huangpu River and Yu Garden
Though the show's filming date has not been made public, it's rumored to take place in Shanghai on November 20. It will be broadcast in more than 190 countries, with US channel CBS playing the show on November 28 at 10pm Eastern Standard Time.
The annual star-studded event has previously been held in London, Los Angeles, Miami, New York and Paris.
From left to right, Liu Wen, He Sui, Xi Mengyao and Ju Xiaowen at the 2016 Victoria's Secret Fashion Show in Paris
Not-officially-confirmed rumors have it that Taylor Swift will perform with (fr)enemies Harry Styles and Katy Perry during the big musical act of the show. But now reports suggest that Swift might not be making it to Shanghai after all.
Plenty of beef might be going around at this year's show?
Previous VS fashion shows have been attended by high-profile guests, so we can probably expect to see plenty of big name celebs descend upon Shanghai over the next few days.
Good luck getting tickets though, as it's said to be nearly impossible.