Fox Cancels Patty Hearst Biopic After Public Criticism

Just hours after Patty Hearst blasted 20th Century Fox for a planned biopic based on a book that "romanticizes my rape and torture," the studio pulled the plug on the film.

Fox issued a statement to PEOPLE confirming it has "decided to cancel the studio’s planned project based on the book American Heiress." No further comment on the project was made.

Earlier Thursday, Hearst issued a statement through daughter Lydia Hearst's spokesperson, criticizing both Fox for its film and CNN for its upcoming documentary series.

The film was to be based on Jeffrey Toobin's unauthorized 2016 biography, American Heiress: The Wild Saga of Kidnapping, Crimes and Trial of Patty Hearst, and directed by Logan's James Mangold. Elle Fanning was signed to star as Hearst.

"Jeffery Toobin’s unauthorized book, American Heiress, which cites one of my kidnappers as its main source, romanticizes my rape and torture and calls my abduction a 'rollicking adventure,'" Heast said in the statement.

She continued, “I am further saddened and appalled that Fox 2000 agreed to finance and produce a movie based on Toobin’s book (with a similarly themed screenplay, also written by men) and that CNN has agreed to continue to perpetuate a one-sided dialogue romanticizing my torture and rape by hosting a podcast and docuseries through Toobin’s distorted lens."

Hearst added that she has "no interest in revisiting such a violent and hurtful time in my life."

Toobin was also involved in the six-part CNN series The Radical Story of Patty Hearst as an executive producer. He is also co-hosting a weekly iTunes podcast with CNN journalist Brian Stetler, which starts on Jan. 26. The TV series will start on Feb. 11.

Hearst was kidnapped by a terrorist group, the Symbionese Liberation Army, in 1974. She later re-emerged in the media as a bank robber and a member of the group. She claimed she was brainwashed in her trial, and served 22 months in prison. Her sentence was commuted by President Jimmy Carter and she was pardoned by President Bill Clinton.

"As hard as it was to do, I have grown well past the 19-year old me and gone on to become a proud wife, mother, and grandmother. I have no interest in revisiting such a violent and hurtful time in my life. Aren’t we living in a better world than this? I sincerely hope the answer is a resounding 'Yes,'" Hearst said in her statement. "I am joyful and inspired by all of the women who have been brave enough to come forward with their truths. I stand with you, I support you, and I applaud you. #ListenToWomen #TIMESUP #MeToo."

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