Netflix has seen an 800% increase in cancellations after the streaming service released the controversial French film ‘Cuties’, which sparked a worldwide boycott for the film’s portrayal of “hyper-sexualized” children.
Reports revealed by two New York-based data analytics firms revealed a huge increase in cancellations during the backlash period which saw #CancelNetflix trend on social media, along with the creation of numerous online petitions.
According to data analytics firm Antenna, in the first weeks of September, Netflix lost five times as many subscribers than in all of August. YipitData, however, put Netflix’s September cancellations at eight times of those in August.
Netflix came under fire in late August after releasing a trailer and the promotional artwork for the film, forcing the streaming service to issue an apology and changed the artwork. Despite the protest, Netflix decided not to pull the film.
But it was following the release of the film that the boycott really kicked-off. Near-pornographic, if not pornographic, scenes from the movie were subsequently shared across social media to the shock of many viewers.
Before long, the hashtag #CancelNetflix was trending at the number one highest rank worldwide.
Since the release of the film, Netflix has been indicted by a grand jury in Texas for the promotion of “lewd” visual material of a child.
The grand jury indictment was filed on September 23 in Tyler County, Texas, according to a copy of the indictment that was tweeted by Texas Rep. Matt Schaefer.
The indictment claims that Netflix did “knowingly promote visual material which depicts the lewd exhibition of the genitals or pubic area of a clothed or partially clothed child who was younger than 18 years of age at the time the visual material was created, which appeals to the prurient interest in sex, and has no serious literary, artistic, political, or scientific value…”
Sen. Ted Cruz was one of several Washington lawmakers to urge the Department of Justice to investigate the production and distribution of the film to determine whether Netflix, its executives, or the individuals involved in the film and production violated any federal child pornography laws.
“The video streaming service and content-producer Netflix is currently hosting a film entitled ‘Cuties’ that sexualizes young girls, including through dance scenes that simulate sexual activities and a scene exposing a minor’s bare breast,” Cruz said in a letter to Attorney General Bill Barr.