Generally speaking, Adam Sandler‘s comedy work has also been extraordinarily dumb, but never has it stepped into the realm of being outright offensive. But it seems that his upcoming Netflix movie “Ridiculous 6” has crossed a line. The star-studded ensemble comedy is currently in production, but has hit a particularly eyebrow raising snag.
Indian Country reports that the film’s Native cultural advisor, along with approximately a dozen Native actors, have walked off the set of the movie. They have taken issue with what is described as a disrespectful, insulting script that, among other things, reportedly has female Native characters named Beaver’s Breath and No Bra, and is generally misrepresentative of Apache culture, getting many details regarding costuming and more wrong.
To be fair, no one is watching an Adam Sandler movie for a lesson in history and culture, but even for the Native actors willing to give some latitude to the comedy were left extremely unhappy with how things played out on set.
“They were being disrespectful. They were bringing up those same old arguments that Dan Snyder uses in defending the Redskins. But let me tell you, our dignity is not for sale. It is a real shame because a lot of people probably stay because they need a job,” said David Hill, adding: “We understand this is a comedy, we understand this is humor, but we won’t tolerate disrespect. I told the director if he had talked to a native woman the way they were talked to in this movie — I said I would knock his ass out.”
To refresh your memory, Nick Nolte, Blake Shelton, Whitney Cummings, Steve Buscemi, Rob Schneider, Dan Aykroyd, Will Forte, Nick Swardson, Terry Crews, Jon Lovitz, Vanilla Ice, Luke Wilson, Steve Zahn, Danny Trejo, Chris Parnell, and Lavell Crawford are part of the ensemble that tells the (seemingly not so hilarious) story of a man who grew up as an orphan among an Indian tribe.
There has been no comment yet from Netflix or the actor’s camp on this, but I can’t say I’m entirely surprised that an Adam Sandler movie is probably being pretty juvenile in its depiction of the characters on screen. That’s expected. But that it’s now crossing over to offending people working on the movie, and with even the film’s cultural advisor taking issue, that suggests that this is a problem that’s more than just someone not being able to take a joke.
Update: Netflix has reponded with this statement, given to Vulture: “The movie has ridiculous in the title for a reason: because it is ridiculous. It is a broad satire of Western movies and the stereotypes they popularized, featuring a diverse cast that is not only part of — but in on — the joke.”