Music: Kate Hudson says she ‘feels terrible’ that autism community feel ‘left out’ of Sia’s new film

Music: Kate Hudson says she ‘feels terrible’ that autism community feel ‘left out’ of Sia’s new film

Music: Kate Hudson says she ‘feels terrible’ that autism community feel ‘left out’ of Sia’s new film

Kate Hudson has waded into the debate surrounding her controversial new film Music.

Music, which stars Hudson and Maddie Ziegler, was written and directed by the musician Sia, and revolves around a recovering addict who becomes a carer for her autistic half-sister.

Over the past few months, Sia has been condemned for casting the neurotypical Ziegler as a neurodivergent character, and for including scenes in which an autistic character is restrained in a physical position that has led to injuries, and even death, in reality.

It also urges the entertainment industry to “create a more inclusive workspace” for neurodivergent people.

<p>Maddie Ziegler in Sia’s controversial new film ‘Music’</p>

Maddie Ziegler in Sia’s controversial new film ‘Music’

(Vertical Entertainment)

Speaking about the controversy, Hudson said during an appearance on Jimmy Kimmel Live: “For me, when I hear that there’s anybody that feels left out I feel terrible.”

She added: “I think when people see the film they will see the amount of love and sensitivity that was put into it, but it is an important conversation to have – not just about this movie, but as a whole about representation.”

The actor, who said that “nobody has really asked” her about the debate so far, added: “I think it’s an ongoing important dialogue to be had about neurotypical actors portraying neurodivergent characters [and] with people who are experts and really know how to engage in the conversation. I encourage it, really and truly. Just to say – we are listening.”

Earlier this month, Sia apologised for some of the content in Music, writing in a statement: “I listened to the wrong people and that is my responsibility, my research was clearly not thorough, not wide enough. I’m sorry.”

In the wake of the controversy, Jane Harris from the National Autistic Society told Newsround: “Many people learn about what life is like for autistic people through film and TV shows. So they need to be realistic so people really understand the challenges autistic people face – and the contribution they can make to our society.

Harris also “urged all TV and film companies to consult autistic people in the writing process so that the stories they tell explain well what it’s like to be autistic. This will help to create a society that works for the 1 in 100 of us that are autistic.”


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