Riverdale star K.J. Apa replaces Kian Lawley in The Hate U Give
The Hate U Give
K.J. Apa has signed on to replace Kian Lawley in Fox’s upcoming film The Hate U Give, after Lawley was fired over a racially offensive video.
Lawley, an actor and YouTube star, was cut from the movie in February when a video surfaced in which he used the N-word and invoked black stereotypes. EW has confirmed that Apa, who stars as Archie Andrews on Riverdale, will replace him, with a week of reshoots planned on the film’s Atlanta set.
The Hate U Give is based on Angie Thomas’ acclaimed YA novel about police brutality and race, and Amandla Stenberg stars as the 16-year-old protagonist, Starr, a black girl who witnesses a police officer shoot her unarmed friend. Apa will replace Lawley as Chris, Starr’s white boyfriend. Russell Hornsby, Regina Hall, Anthony Mackie, Issa Rae, and Common also star.
Lawley apologized after his firing, saying in a previous statement to EW, “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. I understand the impact and I have grown and learned since then. From now on I plan to use my voice for positive change.”
The New Zealand-born Apa has become a breakout star for his role on Riverdale. The CW drama was just renewed for a third season.
Deadline Hollywoodfirst reported Apa’s casting.
The Hate U Give