A group of actors refused to partake in the disrespect of their culture for laughs and a paycheck
Native American actors who were casted in Adam Sandler’s new film, The Ridiculous Six, walked off the film’s set on last week after being offended by what they say are racially charged jokes and a gross misrepresentation of their culture. Native American actors spoke with Vincent Schilling of Indian Country Today confiding to him that the script repeatedly insulted native women and disrespected the Apache culture.
Despite the fact that jobs for Native Americans in Hollywod are very scarce, the group of actors were not going to sit back and contribute to the degradation of their culture for money. One of the actors, Goldie Tom, said they tried to educate the producers about their culture and why the script was disrespectful but the producers could have cared less. 74 year old actor David Hill, Choctaw said,
“..let me tell you our dignity is not for sale. It is a real shame because a lot of people probably stay because they need a job. We understand that this is a comedy and this is humor but we cannot tolerate disrespect. They were bringing up the same old arguments that Dan Snyder (owner of the Washington Redskins) uses in defending the Redskins.”
Former film student Allison Yung, who is Navajo, told Schilling the actors had tried to reason with the producers over and over before walking out. “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. I didn’t want to cry but the feeling just came over me. This is supposed to be a comedy that makes you laugh. A film like this should not make someone feel this way.”
Here is a video of the confrontation filmed by actor Goldie Tom. https://www.youtube.com/watch?t=100&v=NML1FR5NEBs
Abesi Manyando- @abesipr