Warner Bros apologized for any “offense” inflicted on the disabled community in the movie “The Witches.”
Following controversy on social media, Warner Bros had an excellent opportunity to set a decent example after The Witches’ portrayal of Anne Hathaway’s Grand Witch sparked a backlash within the disabled community.
The studio chose Dwight Schrute’s method of expressing regret and not really acknowledging the problem at its core, following criticism of the film “The Witches” according to a report by Deadline.
To back up a bit: In Robert Zemeckis and Guillermo del Toro’s adaptation of Roald Dahl’s classic, the Grand High Witch is shown to have hands that are missing two fingers each, similar to those with a limb difference classified as ectrodactyly or “split hand”.
Those familiar with the original story noted that this particular choice was not specified anywhere in the novel, meaning it was solely a product of the creative production team.
— Amy Marren (@amy_marren) November 2, 2020
“The witches” receives criticism from athletes
British Paralympic swimmer Amy Marren criticized the study for linking those images to the film, which should people with disabilities be seen as terrifying.
“Yes, I am fully aware that this is a movie, and these are Witches … But witches are essentially monsters. My fear is that children will see this movie without knowing that it greatly exaggerates the Roald Dahl original and that they begin to fear limb differences, “Marren said.
In response, a Warner Bros representative told Deadline that the studio was “deeply saddened to learn that our portrayal of fictional characters in The Witches could upset people with disabilities.” so “he regretted any offense caused.”
He continued: “By adapting the original story, we worked with designers and artists to come up with a new interpretation of the feline claws that are described in the book. It was never the viewers’ intention to feel that the fantastic non-human creatures were meant to represent them. ”
Other organizations such as The Lucky Fin Project and the Paralympic Games have criticized the film, but none have commented on the studios’ statement so far.