Native American Actors Walk Off Offensive Adam Sandler Movie Set
In further news of popular actors offending marginalized groups of people, it looks like Adam Sandler's upcoming Netflix comedy, The Ridiculous Six, contained writing so offensive that a number of Native American actors walked off the set during filming.
Actor Loren Anthony spoke with the Indian Country Today Media Network about the decision to walk off set. He said, "They just treated us as if we should just be on the side. When we did speak with the main director, he was trying to say the disrespect was not intentional and this was a comedy.” The site goes on to say that approximately a dozen actors, as well as the Native cultural advisor, left the set.
Anthony says he agreed to be part of the film after being assured that it would not be racist. He said, “I was asked a long time ago to do some work on this and I wasn't down for it. Then they told me it was going to be a comedy, but it would not be racist. So I agreed to it but on Monday things started getting weird on the set."
He then elaborated on specific offenses, saying that there was no care taken to properly represent the tribes they were portraying. He said, "We were supposed to be Apache, but it was really stereotypical and we did not look Apache at all. We looked more like Comanche. One thing that really offended a lot of people was that there was a female character called Beaver's breath. One character says 'Hey, Beaver's Breath.' And the Native woman says, 'How did you know my name?'"
Another actress and former Dartmouth student, Allison Young, painted a similar picture of what happened. Not mincing words she said, "We talked to the producers about our concerns. They just told us, ‘If you guys are so sensitive, you should leave.’ I was just standing there and got emotional and teary-eyed. This is supposed to be a comedy that makes you laugh. A film like this should not make someone feel this way.”
A spokesperson for Netflix released a flippant statement, saying, "The movie has ridiculous in the title for a reason: because it is ridiculous. It is a broad satire of Western movies and the stereotypes they popularized, featuring a diverse cast that is not only part of—but in on—the joke.”
The Ridiculous Six is meant to parody the popular western The Magnificent Seven and is set to arrive on Netflix at some point in 2016.