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If you’re that sensitive, don’t go to the theatre

May 14th, 2024

Judi Dench has given her view on theatrical trigger warnings, saying if audiences are too sensitive, they should avoid going to the theatre.

Trigger warnings have become a controversial topic in theatre and film in recent years, with some believing they are necessary to inform audiences about potentially upsetting or distressing content, including sexual violence and themes of abuse, while others view them as reducing the power of art to shock.

Speaking to the Radio Times, Dench was taken aback by the suggestion, asking, “Do they do that? My god, it must be a pretty long trigger warning before King Lear or Titus Andronicus.”

Judi Dench. Credit: Getty Images

“I can see why they exist, but if you’re that sensitive, don’t go to the theatre, because you could be very shocked,” she added. “Where is the surprise of seeing and understanding it in your own way?”

Other artists have shared similar sentiments on the subject, including Quentin Tarantino, who said that he does not see the need to accommodate viewers that may be offended by films.

“I reject the word ‘offended’. Anyone can be offended by anything. Frankly, I think most of the time – and there are no doubt some exceptions – saying that you are ‘offended’ by a film is the first response of a very narrow mind. ‘I didn’t like it, and here’s why, blah blah blah…’

“But, man, being offended? Art is no offence. And, although, in rare cases, I can understand it, it’s just ridiculous to be offended by the content of a film.”

In other Judi Dench news, she spoke last year about her struggles with age-related macular degeneration, which she said has meant that she can no longer “see on a film set anymore”.

The Oscar-winning actress, who is 89, revealed her diagnosis in 2012 for the condition, which affects the middle part of a person’s vision. She had previously said that it had now become “impossible” to read scripts.

“I can’t see on a film set anymore,” she said. “And I can’t see to read. But you just deal with it. It’s difficult if I have any length of a part. I haven’t yet found a way.”

In 2019, Dench also told the Radio Times that she had given up driving because of her eyesight, calling it “one of the most traumatic moments” of her life.

This content was originally sourced and posted at NME »
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