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Kian Lawley Was Fired From "The Hate U Give" After A Racist Video Surfaced

Lawley's role in the movie, which is based on the 2017 YA novel, will be recast.

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"Due to the controversy surrounding his past comments and behavior, Kian Lawley will no longer appear in The Hate U Give," a spokesperson said in a statement to BuzzFeed News. "The studio plans to recast the role of Chris and reshoot scenes as needed."

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The movie started filming in September 2017 and wrapped in November.

A source also confirmed Tuesday that the talent agency CAA had parted ways with Lawley, a move first reported by the Hollywood Reporter.

The Hate U Give, which is based on the 2017 novel by Angie Thomas, started filming in September and wrapped in November. It does not yet have a release date.

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It tells the story of 16-year-old Starr, who navigates existence between two very different worlds: the black neighborhood she grew up in and her white, suburban private high school. One night, Starr witnesses a white cop shoot and kill her black friend Khalil, who is unarmed. The events that follow cause Starr to find her own voice and learn how to stand up for what she believes in.

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Lawley is famous for being a YouTube star and also costarred in the 2017 movie Before I Fall. On Jan. 26, a 12-second video that apparently shows Lawley using the n-word and other bleeped out racist remarks was posted on YouTube. It is not clear when the video was shot.

In a statement to BuzzFeed News on Monday, Lawley said: "Words have power and can do damage. I own mine and I am sorry. I respect Fox’s decision to recast this role for The Hate U Give as it is an important story, and it would not be appropriate for me to be involved considering the actions of my past."

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"I understand the impact and I have grown and learned since then," he added. "From now on I plan to use my voice for positive change."

The actor had tweeted about the incident Sunday.

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 po… https://t.co/xfRoOLu6bo

Thomas, The Hate U Give's author, also alluded to the situation in a series of tweets on Sunday night.

Feel free to love your fave. But know that there is a TON of pain associated with this, more than you know. If I su… https://t.co/fkFhUY8pLM

Krystie Yandoli is an entertainment editor for BuzzFeed News and is based in New York.

Contact Krystie Lee Yandoli at krystie.yandoli@buzzfeed.com.

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