AceShowbiz - Warner Bros. studio chiefs have promised to "foster empathy" and "understanding" following the backlash against author J.K. Rowling's controversial intervention in the debate over transgender rights.
The "Harry Potter" creator has faced condemnation from activists and the stars of the movie adaptations of her books, including Daniel Radcliffe, Emma Watson, and Eddie Redmayne, since tweeting remarks seen by many as transphobic and refusing to recant in a long explanatory essay.
Executives at the studio that produced the wizarding films and their "Fantastic Beasts" spin-off movies have now commented on the furore by issuing a cryptic statement that promises to "foster empathy and advocate understanding of all communities and all people."
Referring to the recent protests in the U.S. against racial injustice, they said in their statement, "The events in the last several weeks have firmed our resolve as a company to confront difficult societal issues. Warner Bros.' position on inclusiveness is well established, and fostering a diverse and inclusive culture has never been more important to our company and to our audiences around the world."
"We deeply value the work of our storytellers who give so much of themselves in sharing their creations with us all. We recognize our responsibility to foster empathy and advocate understanding of all communities and all people, particularly those we work with and those we reach through our content."
Over the weekend, Rowling intervened on the subject of transgender rights and feminist criticism of the arguments about gender used by activists.
Among her posts were, "If sex isn't real, there's no same-sex attraction. If sex isn't real, the lived reality of women globally is erased. I know and love trans people, but erasing the concept of sex removes the ability of many to meaningfully discuss their lives. It isn't hate to speak the truth."
In her long essay, published on Wednesday, June 10, 2020, she expanded on her points, detailing her own past as a domestic abuse and sexual assault survivor and how this had contributed to her fears women's sex-based rights were being eroded by the trans movement.
Sarah Kate Ellis, the president of LGBTQ+ organisation GLAAD has since hit back, saying Rowling is creating a "very dangerous" environment for trans people.