Warner Bros. Discovery is coming to the defense of JK Rowling after the British author was threatened on social media following her comments about the recent attack on Salman Rushdie.
The Indian-born novelist was stabbed as he took the stage to give a talk on Friday, sending shockwaves through the literary world.
“Horrible news” The ‘Harry Potter’ author tweeted after learning of the attack. “I’m feeling very sick right now. Let it be okay. A Twitter user then responded to Rowling with the threat, ‘Don’t worry, you’re next.’
The exchange prompted the studio, which has brought Rowling’s Potterverse to the big screen among other projects over the past two decades, to speak out in a statement on Sunday.
“Warner Bros. Discovery strongly condemns the threats made against JK Rowling,” the company said, according to The Hollywood Reporter. “We are with her and with all the authors, storytellers and creators who courageously express their creativity and their opinions. WBD believes in free speech, peaceful speech, and supporting those who offer their opinions in the public arena. Our hearts go out to Sir Salman Rushdie and his family following the senseless act of violence in New York. The company strongly condemns any form of threat, violence or intimidation where opinions, beliefs and thoughts may differ.
Citing the social media platform’s anti-violence guidelines, Rowling took to Twitter directly, writing, “Any chance to get support?
Shortly after, she shared that “the police are involved” in the threat, thanking fans for their support and saying authorities have already investigated past threats against her.
A spokesperson for Police Scotland later confirmed to Reuters that they had “received a report of an online threat” against Rowling and that “officers are investigating”.
On Sunday, Rushdie was speaking and had been taken off a ventilator, but remains in critical condition, his son Zafar announced, describing his “life-changing injuries” as severe. The novelist suffered liver damage and severed nerves in an arm and an eye, which he will most likely lose, according to his agent, Andrew Wylie.
The man accused of attacking Rushdie, whose 1988 novel “The Satanic Verses” prompted death threats against him from the Iranian leader, has been charged with attempted murder. He pleaded not guilty to the charges in court on Saturday and is being held without bond in New York.
As for Rowling, this is the second time in recent months that Warner Bros. Discovery publicly supports it.
Rowling’s relationship with the studio has been tested in recent years by the author’s repeated transphobic comments, which have angered ‘Harry Potter’ stars and fans alike.
Disputing an earlier statement that Rowling was “not connected” to the studio in June, Warner Bros. made it clear that he strongly supports the controversial author.
“Warner Bros. has enjoyed a creative, productive and fulfilling partnership with JK Rowling over the past 20 years,” the statement read at the time. “She is one of the most accomplished storytellers in the world, and we’re proud to be the studio bringing her vision, characters, and stories to life now — and for decades to come.”
Fantastic Beasts: Dumbledore’s Secrets, Rowling’s latest fantasy film, hit theaters earlier this year.