Texas Sen. Ted Cruz calling for criminal investigation into Netflix film 'Cuties'

Cuties Netflix

Sen. Cruz calls for DOJ investigation of 'Cuties'

Netflix defended the film as "social commentary against the sexualization of young children".

Streaming service Netflix has spoken out after receiving backlash for the film "Cuties".

"We're deeply sorry for the inappropriate artwork that we used", the company wrote in a tweet.

Yost spokesman Steve Irwin said he didn't know whether the Ohio AG has seen "Cuties", though he said "at least one if not multiple staffers" in Yost's office reviewed the film.

Tthe film faced controversy when Netflix released a promotional photo that featured young girls in provocative dance poses in August. The petition has now amassed more than 600,000 signatures. "We can not stand idly by while Netflix distributes this disturbing film that encourages the exploitation of children".

"It's an award winning film and a powerful story about the pressure young girls face on social media and from society more generally growing up - and we'd encourage anyone who cares about these important issues to watch the movie", a spokesperson told the DC in a statement. "We join our Congressional colleagues in urging the Department of Justice (DOJ) to open an investigation to ensure the film and its production uphold federal laws protecting children from exploitation".

In a letter to Netflix CEO Reed Hastings, Yost wrote that although the director of "Cuties", Maïmouna Doucouré, has stated the film is meant to fight the hypersexualization of young girls, "the manner in which the film attempts to do so is misguided and does more harm than good". The claims of "child nudity" are possibly a reference to a fabricated scene that made its way to the user-edited IMDB Parent's Guide for the film.

"Finally, the Department of Justice should also investigate those involved in the film's casting and production to ensure these children were not exploited behind the scenes", Buck and Biggs added. However, in an unfortunate turn of events, involves herself with friends who run a dance troupe - defying the strict rules of the conservative family background she stems from. Netflix is yet to respond to Cruz's letter.

Centered around 11-year-old Amy, a Senegalese Muslim who explores life away from her traditional upbringing by performing with a girls' dance crew, the Maïmouna Doucouré-directed film has received rave reviews from film critics but was trashed on social media when its United States promotional poster was released this past August.

The film is directed by French-Senegalese director Maimouna Doucoure, and started streaming September 9.

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