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Beyonce Faces Backlash over Rumored Film About South African Woman


Photo by Kevin Mazur/Getty Images for Anheuser-BuschBeyonce has been blasted by a South African chief over an unconfirmed film project based on the life of Saartjie Baartman, a South African woman who was enslaved and exhibited in a freak show in the 19th century due to having a large derriere.

Chief Jean Burgess of the First Indigenous Peoples of South Africa says Beyonce “lacks the basic human dignity” to be writing a film about the famous Khoikhoi woman, according to South Africa’s News 24.

“[Beyonce] lacks the basic human dignity to be worthy of writing Sarah’s story, let alone playing the part. Ignoring the fact that the Khoikhoi is alive and that Sarah’s story would have an impact on how we are portrayed, is a mistake of great magnitude,” Burgess says. “Why Sarah Baartman? Why not a story about an Indigenous American woman? I can only see arrogance in her attempt to tell a story that is not her’s to tell.”

The Sun newspaper previously quoted sources as saying that Beyonce’s motivation for the film is to get take her acting to the next level. “She now wants to write a screenplay that gains her respect — and hopefully awards — from the film industry, and thinks Saartjie’s story could be her ticket,” a source was quoted as saying.

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