Netflix has done it again. Fresh from legal trouble with Egypt for altering history around Cleopatra, they are under fire for yet more race swapping, this time over something far more recent.
Painkilller is a dramatized retelling of massive lawsuit filed against Purdue Pharma over opioid manufacturing.
The investigators who took down the company are have been replaced by a fictional Black woman.
According to the blurb, Painkliier is:
“…inspired by true events and people, [following] the victims and perpetrators whose lives have been altered by Purdue Pharma, the business behind OxyContin.”
The show stars Uza Aduba as Edie Fllowers, an investigator determined to hold those responsible for the opioid epidemic accountable.
According to the producers, the decision to erase the real investigators and substitute them with a fictional character was for story reasons.
They claim audiences needed a singular face as the hero of the television show, hence their creation of Eddie.
The actress herself said, in an interview with Tudum:
”The world of Edie Flowers, who is a fictitious person — but is a composite of a number of investigators, runs alongside the very real Richard Sackler. Having those points of intersection where the two worlds come together was incredibly impactful and powerful.”
Aduba’s character replaces those who built the case against Purdue Pharma, include Assistant U.S. Attorneys Owen Foster and Michael Drescher along with others in the Vermont U.S. Attorney’s office.
U.S. Attorney Christina Nolan had previously spoken about the case, in which she played a role. Saying that Foster and Drescher:
“…worked with no models, there’s no playbook for how to investigate these cases. [They] broke new ground in healthcare law and sent a message to big pharma and big tech.”
The legal case was recognised as a huge team effort pulling in many legal and medical experts.
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