Adam Sandler’s newest movie, The Ridiculous Six, has been met with turmoil before the filming has even completed.
Earlier this week, a report stated that approximately a dozen Native American actors had walked from filming commitments due to a heinous misappropriation of the Apache culture.
“The actors, who were primarily from the Navajo nation, left the set after the satirical western’s script repeatedly insulted native women and elders and grossly misrepresented Apache culture” said Indian Country Today.
The film is meant to be a play on The Magnificent Seven and is being financed by Netflix, where it will be aired upon completion.
Representatives from Netflix released a statement citing satire and deadlines, being behind the ‘misunderstanding’; “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 popularised, featuring a diverse cast that is not only part of – but in on – the joke.”
Actors quoted in the India Country Today article stated that they felt grossly misrepresented, marginalised and disrespected. Citing stereotypical cultural jokes and adages, the film’s script also featured female names such as “beavers breath” and “No Bra”. The actors also stated that the costume department failed to acknowledge their objections to wearing clothing more closely depicting Comanche, rather than the Apache culture they were representing.
Goldie Tom, an actor who removed herself from filming also said, “I felt this was all really disrespectful… Our costumes did not portray Apache people. The consultant, Bruce, spoke to the crew and told them we should not have braids and chokers and he was very disappointed…we spoke to the producers about other things in the script and they said ‘It’s in the script and we’re not going to change it’. Overall, we were just treated disrespectfully, they spoke down to us and treated everyone with strong tones.”
The producers have called the actors and consultants who walked off set on Wednesday and are in communication to put to rest any issues that have arisen from this mishandling of the situation.
One of the consultants for the Native American actors, David Hill, who is Choctaw wrote in a statement, “I hope they will listen to us… we understand this is a comedy, we understand this is humour, but we won’t tolerate disrespect.”