‘The Hate U Give’ creator Angie Thomas attacked online after film’s star is exposed as racist

Angie Thomas Kian Lawley theGrio.com
(Photo: Facebook and Neilson Barnard/Getty Images)

Kian Lawley, the star of the upcoming film The Hate U Give was recently exposed online over racist videos he recorded in the past.

Lawley, a YouTube star, plays the boyfriend of the film’s Black protagonist (played by Amandla Stenberg). The movie is ironically based on the novel of the same name inspired by the Black Lives Matter movement.

In one clip that surfaced online, Lawley is seen using the N-word in a profanity-laced racist tirade. “We’re all black drinking purple Kool-aid and eating Kentucky fried motherf**king chicken,” he says.

Backlash flips on ‘The Hate U Give’ author

After the clips surfaced on social media, Lawley unsurprisingly received swift backlash with many calling from him to be cut from the project, which was filmed last fall in Atlanta.

However, online outrage only imploded after fans of Lawley came to his defense, arguing that people were mad over nothing and that the videos in question were filmed years ago.

Some even tried to change the narrative by somehow blaming, even threatening The Hate U Give creator Angie Thomas.

On Monday, Thomas shared one of countless threatening tweets she received online. In it, one user says it will be her “own damn fault” if she were to get attacked by Lawley’s “fandom.”

“For those who are in the dark about the situation, I’m sorry. All will be revealed eventually. For those who are aware, this is about more than a Tweet,” Thomas tweeted. “Comments like this, directed at me make it worse. I have no control but people who do are watching.”

The backlash caused Black Twitter to get in formation and come to Thomas’ defense by making the hashtag #AngieThomasAppreciationDay a trending topic.

What’s more, supporters called on everyone to not only show love to Thomas by using the hashtag, but also purchasing a copy of her book.

Kian Lawley’s not-so-sorry apology

Following the online outrage, Kian Lawley took to his Twitter account to issue a response.

“if u don’t learn from ur mistakes, u can never grow as a person. i’ve learned a lot & i am grateful to have the power to change,” he tweeted. “i never want to be who i was yesterday. we’re in a constant battle to become a better version of ourselves, use ur voice as ur weapon.”

Lawley’s statement caused mixed reactions. Some fans still believed he had not nothing to apologize for, while critics said it wasn’t enough because he didn’t actually say that he’s sorry.

No word on what impact, if at all, Lawley’s racist videos will have on his role in the film which doesn’t have a release date.

The film also stars Issa Rae, Algee Smith, Regina Hall, Anthony Mackie and Common.