Kian Lawley N-Word Controversy

Kian Lawley N-Word Controversy

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Updated Nov 10, 2019 at 07:12AM EST by Y F.

Added Feb 06, 2018 at 02:29PM EST by Matt.

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Overview

Kian Lawley N-Word Controversy refers to the firing of actor and YouTuber Kian Lawley from the 20th Century Fox film The Hate U Give, after a YouTube video of the actor saying the N-word and other racists comments resurfaced.

Background

On January 26th, 2018, the YouTube[1] account justtrash published a video of YouTuber Kian Lawley saying the following: "We’re all black, drinking purple Kool-Aid and eating Kentucky Fried motherf***ing chicken." In addition to these comments, Lawley can be heard throughout the clip saying the N-word. The video (shown below) received more than 46,000 views in two weeks.



Development

Lawley's Response

On February 4th, 2018, Lawley tweeted,[2] "if u don’t learn from ur mistakes, u can never grow as a person. i’ve learned a lot & i am grateful to have the power to change. i never want to be who i was yesterday. we’re in a constant battle to become a better version of ourselves, use ur voice as ur weapon." The tweet (shown below) received more than 7,900 retweets and 32,000 likes in two days.


Kian Lawley . @KianLawley if u don't learn from ur mistakes, u can never grow as a person. i've learned a lot & i am grateful to have the power to change. i never want to be who i was yesterday. we're in a constant battle to become a better version of ourselves, use ur voice as ur weapon.

Lawley later delivered a statement to BuzzFeed News [7] that said,"Words have power and can do damage. I own mine and I am sorry. I respect Fox’s decision to recast this role for The Hate U Give as it is an important story, and it would not be appropriate for me to be involved considering the actions of my past."

Twentieth Century Fox's Response

The following day, Twentith Century Fox, the studio behind Lawley's upcoming film The Hate U Give told Variey[3] that they had fired Lawley from the film. In a statement, they said:

"Due to the controversy surrounding his past comments and behavior, Kian Lawley will no longer appear in The Hate U Give. The studio plans to recast the role of Chris and reshoot scenes as needed."

Online Response

The reaction to the Lawley's firing was split online, with some fans defending Lawley, stating that his comments were from "years ago." Twitter[4] user @kiansklit tweeted, "ain’t it funny how someone like logan paul can film and upload a video of a fucking dead body and his shit can be swept under the rug but something kian lawley said years ago has come back and got him dropped from a movie how tf is that fucking fair." The tweet (shown below, left) received more than 80 retweets and 375 likes in 24 hours.

Additionally, Twitter[5] user @kiansxstripes tweeted, "I feel so horrible for @KianLawley . I wish i could give him a big hug and tell him that they don’t deserve him if they aren’t willing to listen to him explain himself and apologize. Idk about u but half of the ppl were only going to watch it bc of him. Gonna miss out on the $$$." The tweet (shown below, center) received more than 40 likes in 24 hours.

However, others reacted negatively to his comments. Twitter[6] user @kaelnodonnell tweeted, "If you're a white person defending Kian Lawley or pissed that he got fired from a movie ABOUT antiblackness for being…antiblack, like who the fuck are you kidding, you were never going to see the movie anyway, you were probably just going to post gifsets of his character." The tweet (shown below, right) received more than 40 retweets and 190 likes in 24 hours.


ain't it funny how someone like logan paul can film and upload a video of a f------ dead body and his s--- can be swept under the rug but something kian lawley said years ago has come back and got him dropped from a movie how tf is that f------ fair I feel so horrible for @KianLawley. I wish i could give him a big hug and tell him that they don't deserve him if they aren't willing to listen to him explain himself and apologize. Idk about u but half of the ppl were only going to watch it bc of him. Gonna miss out on the $$$ If you're a white person defending Kian Lawley or p----- that he got fired from a movie ABOUT antiblackness for being...antiblack, like who the f--- are you kidding, you were never going to see the movie anyway, you were probably just going to post gifsets of his character.

Following some of the response to the firing, Angie Thomas, the author of The Hate U Give, changed her Twitter name to "Angie Thomas Doesn't Control Movies." In a series of tweets (shown below),[8] she commented on the response to the firing. In addition, she discusses the disappointment in Lawley. She said:

"Y'all are screenshotting me and coming at my friends without knowing the details of the situation. There is so much more that you don't know, and I'm honestly sad for you. But I'm unprofessional? Oh, only you knew half of what I've gone through because of this. Half of the tears that have been shed. The disappointment and heartbreak. Don't assume, sweets. Everything I've Tweeted is out of sheer disappointment in someone I love. They know. I know. That's all that matters. I've been hurt severely. But please, make me the bad guy. Please, call out black women and attack us. You have no clue what I'm dealing with. Feel free to love your fave. But know that there is a TON of pain associated with this, more than you know. If I subtweet, I subtweet. I do what I want on my Twitter because yep, I'm a grown woman."


Angie Thomas Doesn't Control Movies @angiecthomas Feb 4 Y'all are screenshotting me and coming at my friends without knowing the details of the situation. There is so much more that you don't know, and I'm honestly sad for you. But I'm unprofessional? 10 i 5 123 Angie Thomas Doesn't Control Movies @angiecthomas Feb 4 Oh, only you knew half of what l've gone through because of this. Half of the tears that have been shed. The disappointment and heartbreak. Don't assume, sweets. Everything I've Tweeted is out of sheer disappointment in someone I love. They know. I know. That's all that matters 3 2 104 Angie Thomas Doesn't Control Movies @angiecthomas Feb 4 l've been hurt severely. But please, make me the bad guy. Please, call out black women and attack us. You have no clue what I'm dealing with. 10 ロ7 131 Angie Thomas Doesn't Control Movies Follow @angiecthomas Feel free to love your fave. But know that there is a TON of pain associated with this, more than you know. If I subtweet, I subtweet. I do what I want on my lwitter because yep, l'm a growin woman

Media Coverage

Several media outlets covered the controversy, including Deadline,[9] The Wrap,[10] EW[11] and more.

Search Interest

External References

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Recent Images 5 total


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