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Controversy as four-year-old smokes cigarette in reality show
Destiny, 4, and her fake cigarette. Photo: TLC/Toddlers&Tiaras

A United States television show has sparked outrage after a four-year-old took to the stage with a fake cigarette.

Destiny, four, was reenacting a famous scene from hit film Grease in American show 'Toddlers and Tiaras', reports the Huffington Post.

Like Olivia Newton-John, who played Sandy in the hit film, the youngster was dressed in black leather jacket and tight leather trousers, complete with prop cigarette.

Just before she takes to the stage, Destiny's mother Lisa tells her "don't forget to smoke". And she defended the pop afterwards, saying: "Sandy was a good girl, and it’s all just acting.

"Sandy comes out and throws down a cigarette so Destiny’s going to do that.

"We feel like that’s a part of acting and it’s part of the routine so we’ve added it in there and I believe she will do just fine with it."

Judges on that 'talent' show were shocked, with one saying "Destiny has a cigarette. What is she thinking!"

Immediately after the episode was aired, viewers took to Twitter to register their shock.

It is not the first time the programme has courted controversy. In the past it has featured little girls dressed as drag queens and an eight-year-old learning to pole dance.