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Warner Bros. issues apology after ‘The Witches’ faces backlash

Warner Bros. issues apology after 'The Witches' faces backlash
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According to The Hollywood Reporter, the villainous witches in the film including the coven leader played by Anne Hathaway, are seen as having only three fingers.

Washington: After Warner Bros’ latest release ‘The Witches’ received online backlash from the disability community, the studio has issued a statement that said they regret “any offense caused” by a character design in the film.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the villainous witches in the film including the coven leader played by Anne Hathaway, are seen as having only three fingers.

The design of the fingers resemble like ectrodactyly, also known as split or cleft hand, which is a limb disability.

Several social media users have objected to the representation of the limb disrespectful as it is used to portray a creature as scary.

The Robert Zemeckis-directorial has been adaptated from the classic Roald Dahl children’s book.

According to The Hollywood Reporter, the titular witches in Dahl’s book are described as “claws hidden by gloves” and are depicted in the cover art as having five fingers.

The 1990 released film based on the same book, which was led by Anjelica Huston also had witches with five fingers.

“We the filmmakers and Warner Bros. Pictures are deeply saddened to learn that our depiction of the fictional characters in The Witches could upset people with disabilities, and regret any offense caused,” a spokesperson from Warner Bros said in a statement.

“In adapting the original story, we worked with designers and artists to come up with a new interpretation of the cat-like claws that are described in the book. It was never the intention for viewers to feel that the fantastical, non-human creatures were meant to represent them. This film is about the power of kindness and friendship. It is our hope that families and children can enjoy the film and embrace this empowering, love-filled theme,” the statement continued.

‘The Witches’ was released on October 22 on HBO Max, which is Warner Bros.’ sister streaming service. It was earlier scheduled for theatrical release before the coronavirus induced shutdown of theatres in March.

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