As An Autistic Person, I Am Disappointed In Sias Upcoming Film
Start writing a post
Community

As An Autistic Person, I Am Disappointed In Sias Upcoming Film

However we can help autistic actors get the recognition they deserve

813
Maddie Ziegler is shown in the trailer wearing blue and white headphones

Remember when you had those songs and artists that got you through some serious times, Sia was one of those artists for me. She had some powerful songs that helped me through a lot like "'Bird Set Free" "Alive" "Unstoppable" and yes the most famous one "Titanium" Sia your music got me through so much especially as someone who is autistic and struggles with life sometimes.

But Sia with your newest project you really screwed up here.

Sias newest project is a film called "'Music" (trailer for context here) it stars Kate Hudson, Leslie Odon Jr of "Hamilton" fame, and former ''Dance Moms" star Maddie Ziegler who has appeared in many Sia videos already. In that film Hudsons character Zu becomes the guardian of her autistic half-sister Music played by Ziegler who is non-speaking, Odon Jr plays Ebo a friend of Zu who ends up being someone that Zu can rely on.

While the film seems to have a good story, given that non-speaking individuals don't get a lot of attention in the media. I don't feel as though it is an accurate representation and a majority of the autistic community agree.

Some of the comments I have seen on articles are kind of ablest saying ''so are you saying that only doctors should play doctors, and only serial killers should play serial killers'' not the same case at all.

Some also may say why we criticize Sia but praise shows like "The Good Doctor" and "Atypical" well Fredie Highmore did a lot of research, including working with a consultant and getting tips from autistic individuals, and "Atypical'' listened to the community and hired a bunch of autistic actors to play an important part in the series that didn't involve just being an extra, which is better research that what Zielger did from what I hear was watching meltdowns posted by parents or caretakers which is not only illegal, an invasion of privacy and they have no place in being on social media, but also doesn't not accurately represent all autistics, it also plays into negative stereotypes.

Non-speaking stories have the ability to be told, I do believe that is important to highlight them, the now canceled sitcom Speechless told a good story about the challenges that a teenager faces having a disability. Come Play is a horror film that has a non-speaking child at the center of the story, and not as a helpless victim or savant either. I believe with the right amount of research, and right amount of time with people who are actually non-speaking the story can be told wonderfully regardless if the actor has a disability or not. Its all about respecting the real life person.

When I saw the trailer for Music I thought the overall storyline was good, but I did not like the way Ziegler kind of did her facials in the film. It looked like how people used to make fun of me growing up. Not to mention there was a lot of really bright colors in the trailer which can cause huge sensory overload for some people.

It wasn't just about casting the neurotypical actress Ziegler in the role, it was how Sia acted towards the community when they confronted her about it, she called them bad actors, well if they were bad actors then why does Anthony Hopkins have Oscar wins? Why was Dan Aykroyd part of one of the most successful films of the 80s, why did Everything Is Going To Be Okay which had the very talented Kayla Cromer become so popular on Freeform? Autisitc people can act they just need the opportunity to prove themselves like some of them have been doing their whole lives.

Sia even admitted that Autism Speaks was on board with this film too and that group is not well liked by many autistics. Three years of research and she couldn't figure out that Autism Speaks is not good for autistics at all.

Sia also claimed to have tried to work with a non-speaking autistic actress but claimed the actress found the job to be too stressful so she cast Ziegler instead. Well I would say that while yes it can be stressful, yes autistics can get stressed easily however it is not fair to lump us all into one category, there are plenty of autistic actors out there who would love to have the job. 85% of autistics are already either unemployed or underemployed so why not help them get out there make sure they can get a job.

She also claimed that hiring someone at that level would be cruel and wanted to lovingly represent the community. You claim to have casted 13 autistic people in the film, but what are their roles? Are they just background dancers? Do they have lines? Did she get their input on the film?

What can we do to help? We can start by showing support to autistic actors, follow them on social media, keep sharing their content, fight for them to be in bigger films. Help them become seen.

Here is a couple of autistic actors you can support

PJ Au (fun fact she auditioned for Cromers part on Everything is Going To Be Okay)

Tim Boykin

Mickey Rowe

Tal Anderson

Here are some resources to help autistic actors reach their dreams

Actors for Autism

The Art of Autism

Resources that arent Autism Speaks

Autistic Self Advocacy Network

Autistic Women and Non-Binary Network

The Autisticats (very well researched, run by autistic college students)

Neurodifferent

Paige Layle (learned more about Autism from her on TikTok than Autism Speaks)

Neuroclastic

As for you Sia, I hope that you learn something from all of this, take time to listen to us. Maybe next time you will realize that there is nothing about us without us.

Report this Content
This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
Featured

What Your Car's Color Says About Your Personality

Your color choice speaks volumes. It doesn't just emit an image for the car, it also says something about your style and personality! It's a form of self-expression. Are you confident? Are you sophisticated? Are you easy-going? Are you outgoing? Are you practical? As you're reviewing car sites for your next car purchase, what color will you opt for? Find out what certain color choices says about you!

78251

When it comes to car shopping you likely have certain preferences, including what color it should be. Your color choice speaks volumes. It doesn't just emit an image for the car, it also says something about your style and personality! It's a form of self-expression. Are you confident? Are you sophisticated? Are you easy-going? Are you outgoing? Are you practical? As you're reviewing car sites for your next car purchase, what color will you opt for? Find out what certain color choices says about you!

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

30 Songs On My Back-To-School Playlist For Walks To And From Class

Headed back to in-person classes means you need a pretty banging playlist to power you through those walks to class.

73229
Photo by Zen Chung on Pexels

I don't know about you, but I start each day off with a one-mile walk to class. I have to have good tunes flowing through my ears during those 20 minutes, not to mention the walks between classes and the walks home. So, here is my 30 song playlist to get me through this almost unfamiliar concept we call walking to class.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Be Kind to Yourself: 8 Mental Health Tips to Try

One way you can improve your quality of life is to take care of your mental health. As a result, you'll feel less depressed and be able to enjoy spending time with friends and family more often. These mental health tips might be just what you need to forget about your problems.

43558

One way you can improve your quality of life is to take care of your mental health. As a result, you'll feel less depressed and be able to enjoy spending time with friends and family more often. These mental health tips might be just what you need to forget about your problems.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Should You Own An SUV If You Live In A Snowy state?

There are many reasons to own an SUV. If you live in a cold state or a rural area, you will see that owning an SUV is very important.

41840

The gas and oil prices are too high to run in a smaller vehicle. You are better off with an SUV for hauling cargo and driving larger loads around the town. In addition, owning an SUV is more comfortable and safe than driving a smaller vehicle.

Keep Reading... Show less
Featured

Understanding Why Dog's Lick You

It is a natural instinct for dogs to lick

56665

Why do dogs lick?

Keep Reading... Show less
Facebook Comments