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‘Dear Fat People’ Comedian Loses Film Project in Wake of Controversy

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Nicole Arbour—a comedian whose “Dear Fat People” YouTube video went viral after many people were offended by it—has lost the chance to work on a film project, the film’s director said.

Director Pat Mills said Arbour was in discussions to choreograph dance movie Don’t Talk to Irene, but when he saw the video, he decided he didn’t want to work with her.

Arbour was never formally attached to the project, though she and Mills were in the process of drafting a contract, Mills told TIME. “We never officially fired her because we never hired her because she never signed the contract,” he said.

But Arbour said Mills is using the controversy for his benefit.

“I have never been formally attached to this project. We had spoken of it, and last I heard the team was doing a re-write. Pat Mills is using my YouTube story as a reason to get a low budget film that has not yet even started production press,” Arbour said in an email to TIME.

Mills, on the other hand, said Arbour needs to take responsibility for her actions.

“A lot of people think it’s okay to publicly shame fat people and we need to fight back and say this is just as offensive as homophobia and just as offensive as sexism,” he said. “If you say these things, you should lose a job.”

Arbour previously told TIME that she would not apologize for what she considers satire.

“I feel it’s really important that we make fun of everybody,” she told TIME earlier this week. “I think [what] brings us together and unites us as people is that we can poke fun at all of us.”

Arbour’s video has now been viewed more than 3 million times.

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