New York, 8th November: Warner Bros has apologized after being criticized by people from all over the world over its recently released movie ‘The Witches.’
Baaghi TV: New film ‘The Witches’, has been criticized for showing people with disabilities as ‘villains’ and ‘devils’.
In the recent Robert Zemeckis-directed adaptation, Anne Hathaway’s villainous character, known as the Grand Witch, has missing fingers.
Many people with disabilities pointed out that she appears to have Ectrodactyly, a limb abnormality that’s commonly referred to as “split hand.” Advocates fear that portraying villains with physical defects can perpetuate stereotypes that disabilities are abnormal or scary.
Some people with this condition have posted their pictures and asked if being in this condition is really a cause of fear or embarrassment. On the other hand, the winner of the Paralympics, Amy Marren, has also said that ‘having different limbs’ is not a scary thing. She said, “Limb difference is not scary. Differences should be celebrated and disability has to be normalised.”
— Amy Marren (@amy_marren) November 2, 2020
Following the incident, film director Robert Zemeckis called Amy and apologized to her for the film.
A spokesperson for Warner Bros. said the studio was “deeply saddened to learn that our depiction of the fictional characters in ‘The Witches’ could upset people with disabilities.’”
“In adapting the original story, we worked with designers and artists to come up with a new interpretation of the cat-like claws that are described in the book,” the statement reads. “It was never the intention for viewers to feel that the fantastical, non-human creatures were meant to represent them. This film is about the power of kindness and friendship. It is our hope that families and children can enjoy the film and embrace this empowering, love-filled theme.”
“The Witches,” which debuted on HBO Max in October, is the second film adaptation of Dahl’s popular children’s book. Along with Hathaway, the cast includes newcomer Jahzir Kadeem Bruno, Octavia Spencer, Stanley Tucci, Chris Rock and Kristin Chenoweth.
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