Twentieth Century Fox Films is scrambling to re-shoot scenes in a Black Lives Matter-inspired film after a racially-charged post by YouTuber-turned-actor Kian Lawley came to light.
The film, "The Hate U Give" (dir. George Tilman Jr), is based on the young adult novel by Angie Thomas which deals with the issue of "systemic racism" and police brutality. It follows a young woman's embrace of social justice activism after her unarmed friend is shot by police.
While the film was in post-production, a video of Lawley mocking black people — in which he drops the N-word and says, "We're all black, drinking f**ing purple Kool-aid and eating Kentucky fried motherf****** chicken" — gained national attention.
Lawley says he regrets the "mistake" and is a different person now, but his apology clearly wasn't enough for Fox, which announced Monday that he had been fired and his scenes are being re-shot with another actor.
"Due to the controversy surrounding his past comments and behavior, Kian Lawley will no longer appear in The Hate U Give," the studio said in a statement on Monday, THR reports.. "The studio plans to recast the role of Chris and re-shoot scenes as needed."
Lawley issued his own statement via Twitter on Sunday in which he vaguely referred to his past "mistakes."
"If u don’t learn from ur mistakes, u can never grow as a person," he wrote. "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."
Other big names in the film include Amandla Stenberg, Common, Sabrina Carpenter, Regina Hall and Anthony Mackie.
No word yet on Lawley's status in the upcoming thriller Monster Party, starring Sam Strike and Virginia Gardner.