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Sia defends casting a nondisabled actor to portray a person with autism in her upcoming film ‘Music’


The Australian artist identified for her hits like “Chandelier” and “Elastic Heart” introduced the discharge of the trailer for the movie titled “Music” in a post to Twitter on Thursday. She wrote and directed the movie.

“The news you’ve been waiting for!” she wrote, together with a sneak peek of the film set to reach in early 2021.

The movie’s solid contains Kate Hudson, Leslie Odom Jr. and 18-year-old “Dance Moms” star Maddie Ziegler, who has usually labored with the singer in a number of music movies.

Ziegler, a nondisabled actor, portrays a teen with autism who conveys her emotions to the surface world by a pill. The character relies on the artist’s neuroatypical pal who discovered it worrying to be nonverbal, Sia said.
Several fans and activists in the autistic community discovered the casting to be offensive and misrepresentative. Many questioned the depiction of Ziegler’s character, arguing that an autistic actor ought to have been solid within the function and that disabled folks must be employed to inform their tales.
“Sia has got this one wrong. There are so many talented autistic actors out there,” the National Autistic Society wrote in a Twitter post.
In a collection of tweets and replies, Sia defended her decision to solid Ziegler within the function, saying she felt the usage of a nondisabled actor was more compassionate. The character was by no means known as disabled, however relatively somebody with “special abilities,” she said.
“I actually tried working with a beautiful young girl non verbal on the spectrum and she found it unpleasant and stressful. So that’s why I cast Maddie,” she posted.
In one publish, the singer expressed her “fury” over the difficulty, calling on folks to observe her movie earlier than making a judgment. Sia additionally wrote that she spent three years researching for the movie, which she described as “both a love letter to caregivers and to the autism community.”
The controversy sparked the usage of hashtags #NothingAboutUsWithoutUs and #ActuallyAutistic on social media and continued the dialog in regards to the portrayal of incapacity within the media with out together with illustration and the voices of those that really expertise life as an individual with incapacity.
In response to criticism that the film excludes “disabled and neuro diverse actors” from their very own narratives, the singer said she solid “thirteen neuroatypical people and three trans folk” as docs, nurses and singers, not as “prostitutes or drug addicts.”
“I hired plenty of special abilities kids. I’m willing to be misunderstood because I think this movie does more good than harm,” she said in another reply.

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