Franco-Senegalese scriptwriter and director Maïmouna Doucouré has completed her first feature film, Mignonnes (Cuties). 11-year-old Amy comes across a group of adult-style twerking dancers nicknamed “Cuties”. Intrigued, Amy learns to dance like them, wanting to join their clique and escape her family problems.
The film, which won awards at Sundance and Berlin, was released in French cinemas at the end of August. It is being translated into 40 languages and will be broadcast by Netflix in 190 countries. It has become controversial because of the way it looks at the hyper-sexualization of pre-adolescent girls, particularly through social networks such as TikTok.
Although it was supposed to be available on Turkey’s streaming platform from September 9th, the Turkish broadcasting watchdog has banned it because of images of child exploitation. The Turkish Ministry of Family and Social Affairs has appealed to the Radio and Television High Council, arguing the film risks “exposing children to abuse and compromising their psychological development.”
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