There was a small but successful protest in Flushing, New York which has all been recorded here. The most disturbing discovery being that, according to what the auditioning actors told our protesters (quoth sidepocket_pro):
The casting director inside said that they are casting around the race of the actors they have chosen, so this is how the tribes will break down:
- Water Tribe = White People
- Fire Nation = Indian People
- Earth Nation = "Asian" People
Which if rumors are correct, the final puzzle piece is:
- Air Nation = White People
And this is what it means:
- The two nations that contribute the three main heroes of the film are now (conveniently) white.
- Even when people disagreed about Aang's race, most people agreed that yes, Sokka and Katara are definitely darker-skinned characters and look to be Inuit-based. The Water Tribe was - on whole - the darkest-skinned characters in the show, and they were the heroes Their nation has been completely white-washed.
- Oh! But guess who the dark-skinned ACTORS get to now play in the movie? THAT'S RIGHT, THEY ARE NOW THE VILLAINOUS NATION.
- This Asian-based fantasy world is now composed of: generic!Asian (periphery roles), South East Asian (villains) and two nations of generic!white (heroes). ONCE AGAIN, WHITE IS THE DEFAULT "RACE" FOR FANTASY CHARACTERS
THE WASHINGTON POST has written an article about the casting of The Last Airbender! (OH! If you keep getting the login screen, read the article HERE.) And I am loving this Casting Director Ricketts more and more with every gem that drops from her mouth:
"There's been some talk that we're casting authentic Asians as a response to the backlash, which is totally wrong because our world is multi-ethnic and the 'Avatar' world will be multi-ethnic.'"O RLY, MS RICKETTS?? Then why is the Inuit-based nation now white? ANYONE WITH EYES could tell that the Water Tribe was not white, even Jackson "I need a tan!" Rathbone. So is the Water tribe now gonna be Nordic? Or Icelandic? Or vampiric? The paler they are, the better the hero, amirite?
Anyway, bless the Washington Post, they did a bang up job of reporting. The best (saddest?) bit is on the last page with the quintet of hopeful actors and DeeDee Ricketts' 'helpful' advice.
Let me get a few things clear, since there are a lot of people who have a thousand different opinions about what and who aang_aint_white is:
1) People who are protesting this do not hate white people. People who are protesting this do not have a political agenda. People from all spectrums of politics and race support this cause.
2) AAW is not composed of a handful of disgruntled nerdy white fans who scream racism but sekritly just want some other pet actor to play the roles. We are not all-white and the only thing that concerns us about this casting is white-washing, yellowface and discrimination.
3) AAW isn't composed of disgruntled Asians with nothing better to do than pick on honest-working white actors and innocent!sweet!Hollywood. We are not all-Asian and we are concerned about the systemic racial bias in Hollywood that has been going on for decades. If we don't speak up, this will continue.