A petition championed by a Native American extra who walked off the set of “The Ridiculous 6” is calling on star/producer Adam Sandler to address offensive content and fire a producer who was unwilling to listen to the cast’s complaints. The Care2 petition has collected more than 20,000 signatures so far and is looking to get Sandler's and Netflix CEO Reed Hasting’s attention to the conditions that prompted more than a dozen Native American extras to walk off the set April 22.
Allie Young, one of the Navajo extras who walked off the set after an altercation with a producer, is spearheading the petition drive. She told Newsweek her younger brother had killed himself because of racism and she wants to see things improve for Native Americans. "In his suicide note, he said, 'It's hard to stay alive when you're brown and gifted.' I want to take a stand for native and indigenous youth. I want them to see their people portrayed as something better." Young, who has a bachelor's degree in film and media studies from Dartmouth, had hoped to see things change in depictions of Native Americans on film.
Among the complaints addressed in the petition were distasteful jokes about alcoholism among Native Americans, giving Native American female characters names like "Beaver Breath," "Never Wears Bra" and "Sits-on-Face," and bronzing extras to look “more Indian.” The producer targeted for firing from “The Ridiculous 6” was caught on video telling Native American extras, “Well, if you're overly sensitive, you should leave."
“The Ridiculous 6” was supposed to be the first movie by Adam Sandler’s Happy Madison production company as part of his new multimovie deal with the popular streaming service company Netflix. Netflix defended the movie, saying the material in question is “satire.” Sandler has yet to officially comment on the situation.
“The Ridiculous 6” has yet to announce a release date. Shooting on the Netflix original film began in February. Adam Sandler is set to star along with Steve Buscemi, Nick Nolte, Dan Aykroyd and others.