Netflix scraps Ibram X Kendi's 'Antiracist Baby' among other woke shows

Sources at Netflix reportedly stressed that the decisions to pull the plug on these products were not based on cost, but were creative in nature.

Hannah Nightingale Washington DC

Netflix has pulled the plug on a number of projects, including Dr. Ibram X. Kendi’s woke animated series aimed at preschoolers, "Antiracist Baby," as well as other projects

According to Variety, the streaming giant also dropped "Wings of Fire," "With Kind Regards From Kindergarten," as well as another Kendi project, "Stamped: Racism, Antiracism and You."

"Stamped: Racism, Antiracism and You" was intended to serve as a "companion piece" to another project, "Stamped From the Beginning," which is still in production.

According to Variety, that production is intended to serve as " a hybrid documentary and scripted feature that delves into race in the United States."

Sources at Netflix reportedly stressed that the decisions to pull the plug on these products were not based on cost. "The decisions not to move forward with these projects were creative rather than cost related, meaning they would have taken place regardless of the company’s slower revenue growth," Variety reported.

While the decision was not financial, it comes as the company laid off around 150 employees in an attempt to cut costs following a lackluster beginning quarter of the year, according to Variety.

Marking the first decline in subscribers in a decade, Netflix lost around 200,000 subscriber’s in the first quarter of 2022. Subsequently, the company dismissed around 25 employees from its marketing group.

Netflix’s stock prices have also plummeted in recent months, seeing a drop of over $100 per share between April 19 and 20. The company opened the year with stocks at $597.37 per share. On Friday, that price was just $186.22.

Earlier this month, Netflix announced in a new company culture memo that they would not "censor specific artists or voices" even if employees consider the content "harmful."

"If you'd find it hard to support our content breadth, Netflix may not be the best place for you," the memo states.

"If you’d find it hard to support our content breadth, Netflix may not be the best place for you," it added.

The memo defended the decision, stating: "Entertaining the world is an amazing opportunity and also a challenge because viewers have very different tastes and points of view. So we offer a wide variety of TV shows and movies, some of which can be provocative. To help members make informed choices about what to watch, we offer ratings, content warnings and easy to use parental controls."

"Not everyone will like — or agree with — everything on our service," the Artistic Expression section continues. "While every title is different, we approach them based on the same set of principles: we support the artistic expression of the creators we choose to work with; we program for a diversity of audiences and tastes; and we let viewers decide what’s appropriate for them, versus having Netflix censor specific artists or voices."

Also placed on the chopping block recently was Meghan Markle's feminist children's show "Pearl."

The show was reportedly "in the development stage" and was to be loosely based on Markle's own childhood. It would have followed 12-year-old Pearl, who finds inspiration from a number of influential women throughout history.


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