LOS ANGELES — Angelina Jolie says an account in Vanity Fair of her casting process for children to appear in her Khmer Rouge film “First They Killed My Father” is false and upsetting.

The movie deals with the childhood of a woman decades ago under the brutal Khmer Rouge regime in Cambodia.

The article depicts casting directors presenting money to impoverished children and taking it away from them as an acting exercise.

Many people online criticized the process as exploitative.

Director Jolie and producer Rithy Panh issued joint statements Sunday refuting the account through a representative from Netflix, which is producing and distributing the film.

Jolie says parents, guardians and doctors were on set daily. Panh adds that children were not tricked or entrapped and that filmmakers took great care to ensure their welfare was protected.

– From news service reports