Sia’s upcoming movie, Music, receives endless backlash that she now regrets responding to after the Trailer release this Thursday.
Music is Sia’s movie she has created over these past years that follows an autistic girl that she calls ‘low functioning but bright.’ After years of researching the autism spectrum and the problems autistic people face, Sia had been ready to share this story with the world, yet she forgot to consider the opinions of actual autistic people. After casting Maddie Ziegler, a neurotypical actress, for the role, Sia had been flooded with responses from people on the autism spectrum stating their opinions on the cast.
An autistic actress, named Helen Angel, had tweeted at Sia stating, “Hi! I’m an Actually Autistic professional actress that could have been cast & hired on short notice. I once acted in a film the same day I was contacted. So this reasoning is 100% false. The fact is that they did not want to hire an actor with autism.” Multiple responses from Autistic people came like this, addressing how Sia didn’t seem to talk to real people under the spectrum while making this movie, and how not casting an actual autistic actor for this role was ableist.
Her response was harsh, as Sia had called Helen a ‘bad actor’ and repeatedly told people about how she felt Music was being judged unfairly. The behavior she showed was unseen before, showing her passion for this topic. Sia stated, “…she spent three years researching and cast “thirteen neurodiverse people, three trans folk, and not as f—ing prostitutes or drug addicts but as doctors, nurses and singers. F—ing sad nobody’s even seen the dang movie. My heart has always been in the right place.”
These two differing viewpoints clash tremendously as one feels un-represented with the lack of an autistic actress for the role and the other feels misunderstood for their reasoning. But, as the trailer for Music released, Sia found herself regretting responding so fast and takes back the comments she made over the month. “Looking back, I should have just shut up; I know that now,” says Sia.
The movie Music is set to release on January 14th, 2021 with a soundtrack featuring songs by Sia herself and a full cast with Kate Hudson and Leslie Odom Jr.