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Harry Potter star Ralph Fiennes claims audiences have ‘gone too soft’-Sabrina Barr-Entertainment – Metro

One viewer said the actor was ‘just lacking in empathy and curiosity’.

Harry Potter star Ralph Fiennes claims audiences have ‘gone too soft’-Sabrina Barr-Entertainment – Metro

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Harry Potter star Ralph Fiennes has weighed in on how he believes audiences have changed over the years, calling out the need for ‘trigger warnings’.

On Sunday morning, the actor appeared on Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg, where he spoke to her about the evolution of theatre.

When asked by the presenter whether audiences have ‘gone too soft’, Ralph answered affirmatively.

‘I think they have, yes,’ the 61-year-old responded. ‘I think we didn’t used to have trigger warnings.’

He then explained how in William Shakespeare’s Macbeth, which he is currently starring in with Indira Varma, there are ‘very disturbing scenes’ and ‘terrible murders and things’.

‘But I think the impact of theatre should be that you’re shocked, and you should be disturbed,’ he continued.

One viewer said the actor was ‘just lacking in empathy and curiosity’ (Picture: Jeff Overs/BBC/PA)

‘I don’t think you should be prepared for these things.’

Ralph looked back on when he was younger, when they ‘never had trigger warnings for shows’.

Laura, 47, proceeded to ask if the James Bond star would therefore get rid of trigger warnings if he had the ability to.

‘I would, yes. I would,’ he stated.

‘I think things like strobe effects and things that might affect people physically they should be notified on, but I don’t think… Shakespeare’s plays are full of murders and full of horror, and as a young student and lover of the theatre, I never experienced trigger warnings telling me, “By the way in King Lear, Gloucester’s going to have his eyes pulled out.’

As Ralph and Laura laughed, he continued: ‘I mean the shock is, “Oh my god, this thing is happening. Theatre has to be alive and connect in the present. It’s the shock, it’s the unexpected. That’s what makes an act of theatre so exciting.’

Ralph played Lord Voldemort in the Harry Potter film franchise (Picture: Warner Bros)

While there were people who agreed with Ralph’s point of view, others pointed out that some find it ‘necessary’ to have trigger warnings for potentially traumatic content, particularly if they have personal experiences with the topics raised.

‘Having witnessed the domestic violence scenes in “I, Tonya” induce a full-on epileptic seizure in an audience member, I’m gonna say keep the trigger warnings in. You might not need them, but other people do,’ said an X user called Mickey.

Another user called Miles said that they found Ralph’s opinion ‘really disappointing’ and ‘just lacking in empathy and curiosity’.

‘OK, so, Trigger Warnings aren’t for you – don’t engage or skip. But for people with trauma they’re valuable. It’s nothing about being “soft” and recognising we all have different experiences and thresholds.’

Someone else called Matt said that in their opinion, it would have been helpful for there to be someone else present ‘to just patiently explain why they actually have them and why things change from then to now’.

Sunday with Laura Kuenssberg airs on Sundays at 9pm on BBC One and BBC iPlayer.

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