The "To The Bone" Trailer Has Started A Complicated Discussion About Eating Disorders
The movie, which debuts on Netflix next month, stars Lily Collins as a 20-year-old woman with anorexia.
On Tuesday, Netflix released the trailer for To the Bone, a comedy-drama whose main character Ellen (Lily Collins) has anorexia.
The trailer for To the Bone, which will launch on Netflix on July 14, has started a conversation online about how the mainstream media portrays mental health and eating disorders.
Support and opposition toward the trailer were relatively even. While some people thought it was "great"...
...others felt "it is not helpful."
Some Twitter users said the film could be "triggering" for "impressionable" audiences...
...calling it "a prime example of companies exploiting severe mental health illnesses..."
...and an example of the "romanticisation of eating disorders."
There were concerns about how To the Bone would affect those who have eating disorders.
And that the film's images could be used in an unhealthy way by people with eating disorders as "thinspo," slang for "thin inspiration."
Some have likened the criticism of the To the Bone trailer to the response to Netflix's 13 Reasons Why, which told the story of a teen girl who kills herself after being raped.
But there are others who don't think To the Bone will be another 13 Reasons Why.
There seems to be a fine line: some people want mental health and eating disorders to be represented on TV and in film, but when it is, it's sometimes conflated with "glorifying" these subjects.
In defense of To the Bone, Twitter users pointed out that Marti Noxon, who wrote and directed the film and whose real life serves as the inspiration for Ellen's, had an eating disorder in her early teens and twenties.
Some pointed out that Collins has also spoken about her own experience with an eating disorder.
To the Bone premiered at the Sundance Film Festival in January 2017, and reviews were generally positive.
The cast of To the Bone also recorded a video for World Eating Disorders Action Day, raising awareness through facts many people may not have known about eating disorders.
BuzzFeed News has also reached out to Netflix for comment on the response to the To the Bone trailer.
UPDATE: On Thursday night, Noxon issued a statement about the controversy surrounding the trailer for To the Bone via her Twitter account. Read Noxon's full statement below:
"Having struggled with anorexia and bulimia well into my 20s, I know firsthand the struggle, isolation and shame a person feels when they are in the grips of this illness. In an effort to tell this story as responsibly as we could, we spoke with other survivors and worked with Project Heal throughout production in the hopes of being truthful in a way that wasn't exploitive. That said, it's important to remember that each person's battle with EDs is unique and To The Bone is just one of the millions of ED stories that could be told in the US at this very moment. My goal with the film was not to glamorize EDs, but to serve as a conversation starter about an issue that is too often clouded by secrecy and misconceptions. I hope that by casting a little light into the darkness of this disease we can achieve greater understanding and guide people to help if they need it."