ALBUQUERQUE (KRQE) – A group of Native American actors in New Mexico took a stand that people are talking about across the nation. They were so offended, they walked off the set of an Adam Sandler movie set.
Local actor Loren Anthony tweeted this Wednesday:[tweet
The actors’ protest has garnered national attention on social media. They’re also getting a lot of support from people visiting for the Gathering of Nations.
“It’s bullying on another level,” explained Loren Anthony. Anthony is one of nearly a dozen actors who walked off Adam Sandler’s, ‘The Ridiculous Six’ movie set Wednesday, as it was filming in northern New Mexico.
“I didn’t feel like it was right, so it compelled me, you know to stand up and say something about it,” Anthony told KRQE News 13.
He and other Native Americans were hired as extras to represent the Apache Tribe. They said a cultural advisor was on set to make sure their role was sensitive to their culture.
“They made it sound like the Native Americans were going to be respected,” explained Goldie Tom, who was hired on to play an Apache woman.
She and others said they were initially excited to be in the Adam Sandler film, and enjoy some of his movies. “I didn’t expect the outcome of this,” said Hatuk Hill, who also walked off the set. “I got a new perspective being inside and participating.”
The actors told KRQE News 13, Native women in the movie had names like Beaver’s Breath, and Wears No Bra. They said one scene had an Apache woman squatting and urinating, while smoking a peace pipe.
Anthony said he felt like the film was “degrading women.” “Because as a Native American person, we hold our women very sacred,” he said.
When some voiced concerns, Anthony said producers told them, “If you guys are so sensitive, you should leave.” Anthony said some of them did leave, including the cultural advisor hired to represent the Apache Tribe.
The actors’ protest has garnered national attention. They’re also getting a lot of support from locals.
“Power to the people, they should walk out,” said Victor Antonio Key IV.
“I don’t know of any place or anything that says it’s OK to make fun of races,” said Esther Moses.
The actors said leaving the big production was a tough call. Some were afraid of being black-listed in the industry. But, the group told KRQE News 13 they stand by their decision. “We’re not going to tolerate the disrespect in any industry,” said Hatuk Hill.
“I think it’s great that people are joining together in that sense of unity,” said Antony. “I’ve been going to school for theater, for drama, acting classes for eight years, only to get on set to hoop and holler.”
The Ridiculous Six is for release on Netflix. Netflix released a statement to Deadline Thursday, stating, “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 popularized, featuring a diverse cast that is not only part of – but in on – the joke.”
The actors who walked out told KRQE News 13 they followed the cultural advisor who also left the movie set.