YouTuber Kian Lawley Dropped From "The Hate U Give" Film After N-Word Footage Emerges

6 February 2018, 12:17 | Updated: 6 February 2018, 12:23

Kian Lawley
Kian Lawley. Picture: Instagram

By Josh Lee

YouTuber Kian Lawley has been fired from an upcoming film after a video showing him using racist slurs emerged.

On January 26, a video showing Kian using the N-word. He also said, "We’re all black drinking purple Kool-aid and eating Kentucky fried motherf—king chicken,” in the leaked clip. He was set to star alongside Amandla Stenberg in the film "The Hate U Give," which follows the story of a young black woman who is drawn into activism after witnessing police shooting an unarmed friend.

Kian, who has a YouTube channel with over 3,000,000 subscribers, initially responded to criticism on February 4th, tweeting, "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.”

Kian Lawley was set to star alongside Amandla Stenberg in "The Hate U Give"
Amandla Stenberg. Picture: Instagram

But following the backlash, Twentieth Century Fox decided to recast him completely. They told Variety, "Due to the controversy surrounding his past comments and behaviour, 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."

Yesterday, Kian responded to the recast announcement. He told Variety, "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. I understand the impact and I have grown and learned since then. From now on I plan to use my voice for positive change.”