MEDIA RELEASE: CARLY RYAN FOUNDATION CALLS FOR 'CUTIES' TO BE CLASSIFIED AS C.A.B
CARLY RYAN FOUNDATION CALLS FOR 'CUTIES' TO BE CLASSIFIED AS CHILD EXPLOITATION MATERIAL
The Carly Ryan Foundation (CRF) has written to the Australian Classification Board calling for the film Cuties to be classified as child exploitation material.
The film is currently causing widespread controversy in the United States, with a campaign underway calling for Netflix subscribers to cancel their subscriptions. Media has reported that Netflix is already experiencing an 8-fold increase in cancellations since the campaign.
The movie has polarised viewers through its interpretation of the very real societal issue of the sexualisation of young children through their exposure to overtly sexual content. In the context of the movie, the director explores the consequences of the exposure of young girls to hyper-sexualised music videos and dance routines. The criticism falls mainly in that children should not have been portrayed in such a sexualised manner. Sonya Ryan is critical of the movie for different reasons.
"I'm not concerned about the underlying theme of the film," she said. "The sexualisation of young children is a problem that should be openly discussed, considered, and acted upon. Ms Doucoré is correct; this needs to be addressed more, and it’s part of the work of CRF to encourage critical thinking in Australian students about what they are exposed to and the effects of hyper-sexualisation on their self-image and the relationships they have with others."
"My concerns lie in the use of child actors, and the cinematography used to convey the issue of the sexualisation of children. My concern is that scenes within the film will be used as content for the arousal of child sex offenders, and as confirmation that their [the offenders] sexualisation of children is acceptable. The child actors then become an unwitting victim of child exploitation material."
"This is why I have written to the Classification Board not to censor the conversation about the impact of hyper-sexualised content, but to protect the children in this film from being exploited and used as a tool for arousal by child sex offenders and request that the film be classified as child exploitation material."
"These concerns are not baseless. I have spoken with law enforcement contacts, and they have confirmed to me that Cuties is being openly discussed on multiple forums and threads on the darknet used by child sex offenders and paedophiles."
Sonya Ryan said, "The expression of someone’s art will always be open to interpretation, and can sometimes be offensive to different audiences. This is an important aspect of creativity and expression; to have an audience or viewer reflect on the art being expressed and provoke critical discussion and debate. But when provocative, artistic expression involves children, there must be a balance to ensure children are appropriately protected."
"I look forward to the response of the Classification Board in appropriately classifying this film as child exploitation material."