In response to a trailer released on Nov.. . 19, with Maddie Ziegler as a nonverbal autistic teenager, activists, people on the autism spectrum, and their loved ones continued to talk about the portrayal of offensive stereotypes and visual effects in film.
An online petition was launched on Friday to cancel the premiere of the film. This campaign was led by Hannah Marshall, who identifies herself as an autistic woman from North Carolina. By Tuesday afternoon, over 500 people had signed the petition.
« As an autistic person, I ask that this film be canceled, » wrote Marshall on the fundraising page. “It is extremely offensive to me and to other autistic people. Sia has shown no remorse for her imprecise and hurtful betrayal of the community. ”
« This movie isn’t going to have much of an impact on the story, » she continued. « If you break it off, it will express that intolerance to neurodivergence is not acceptable in society today. Sia and her staff have additional options for funds; You will survive even if this movie doesn’t make money. ”
Supporters shared their own experiences in the comments on the petition. « Autistic woman here, and I find it extremely uncomfortable what she’s doing with the film, and I am also disappointed with the way she deals with the criticism she’s getting, » wrote Letitia Yates.
In response to criticism of her directorial debut, Sia spent hours Friday engaging with disability activists on social media who urged the singer to use the term « special skills » instead of « disabled » for people with autism neurotypical actor who plays the lead role and exercises her privilege to make a film that focuses on the autism community.
The singer and director replied that she had looked at input from autistic people and their allies and tried to work with a « beautiful young girl non-verbally on the spectrum until she found [the project] uncomfortable and stressful. ”
Sia went on to explain her creative contribution: “The film is a love letter to both the caregivers and the autism community. I have my own unique view of the community and felt that it was underrepresented and forced to make it. If that makes me shit, I’m shit, but my intentions are great. ”
« Music » with Kate Hudson and Leslie Odom Jr. . , should hit theaters in February 2021.
Sia, music, Maddie Ziegler, autism
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