Actor Anne Hathaway has issued an apology for the negative representation of people with limb differences in her latest film The Witches.
The actor said this would not have happened had she made the connection between limb differences and the look of her character.
As the evil Grand High Witch, Hathaway’s character has three fingers on each hand that resemble the congenital disorder ectrodactyly, reported Entertainment Weekly.
Many prominent people including Paralympian Amy Marren, actress Melissa Johns, and writer-director Ashley Eakin, and organizations including the Lucky Fin Project, Reach, and Changing Faces had blasted the film for perpetuating negative stereotypes against people with limb differences. The movie is an adaptation of Roald Dahl’s story.
“I have recently learned that many people with limb differences, especially children, are in pain because of the portrayal of the Grand High Witch in The Witches,” Hathaway wrote in an Instagram post on Thursday.
“Let me begin by saying I do my best to be sensitive to the feelings and experiences of others not out of some scrambling PC fear, but because not hurting others seems like a basic level of decency we should all be striving for. As someone who really believes in inclusivity and really, really detests cruelty, I owe you all an apology for the pain caused. I am sorry.”
The actor promised to do better in future.
“I particularly want to say I’m sorry to kids with limb differences: now that I know better I promise I’ll do better. And I owe a special apology to everyone who loves you as fiercely as I love my own kids: I’m sorry I let your family down.”
Directed by Robert Zemeckis, the film released on October 22.
The film’s creators and Warner Bros also issued an apology, saying they were deeply saddened to learn that the depiction had upset people with disabilities.