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Ohio Attorney General calls for the removal of 'Cuties' from Netflix

Yost and the Attorneys General of Louisiana, Texas and Florida sent the letter to the company's CEO on Monday.
Credit: Netflix

Ohio Attorney General Dave Yost is joining the call to have Netflix remove the film "Cuties" over concerns that it sexualizes and exploits children in a dangerous way. 

Yost and the Attorneys General of Louisiana, Texas and Florida sent the letter to the company's CEO on Monday.

The Netflix description for the film, which is rated mature, reads: "Eleven-year-old Amy starts to rebel against her conservative family’s traditions when she becomes fascinated with a free-spirited dance crew."

The letter explains that the film encourages and normalizes the sexual exploitation of children, something that Yost is responsible for prosecuting.

“In this era where we are fighting a seemingly never-ending battle against human trafficking, this film is counterproductive – it whets the appetites of those who wish to harm our children in the most unimaginable ways,” Yost said. “I vehemently opposed the continued streaming of the movie and request that it is voluntarily removed.”

Last month, Netflix issued an apology following its release of promotional artwork and the trailer for the film that was considered inappropriate by many due to the way the characters were depicted. 

Netflix said that the trailer and artwork were an inaccurate representation of "Cuties", but many groups had already begun voicing concern and petitioning for the removal of the film from the streaming service. 

Combined, the Change.org petitions calling for the removal of "Cuties" have gathered over 1 million signatures.

Political figures have begun to request through letter writing and speaking out publicly against what they call the sexualization of children portrayed in the film. On Sept. 11, Senator Ted Cruz wrote U.S. Attorney General William Barr, asking the government to pursue whether Netflix had broken laws by releasing the film. 

The film, which has not been removed, currently carries poor ratings across most review platforms, having been "review bombed", despite high praise from many critics and garnering awards at film festivals.

Netflix has defended the film as depicting the problematic nature of sexualizing children, arguing the intent is to show disapproval of the practice. They have stood by "Cuties" and its director, Maïmouna Doucouré.

The streaming service has yet to comment on the latest letters and statements by the politicians.