Learning nothing from the last two years, another Hollywood studio has decided to give another Asian role to another white actor.
In a narrative that has repeated itself from Doctor Strange’s casting of Tilda Swinton as The Ancient One to Emma Stone as a character named Allison Ng in Aloha to the adaptation of Death Note being set in Seattle and featuring majority white actors to Scarlett Johansson as Major Motoko Kusanagi in Ghost in the Shell, Hellboy: Rise of the Blood Queen has decided that the best actor for their Japanese American character Ben Daimio (the grandson of a Japanese Imperial assassin in WWII) ... is British actor Ed Skrein.
Unsurprisingly, after hearing that the role of a Japanese American character had been given to a white actor, Asian actors and other figures in the industry weren’t happy about it. Upon learning of the casting news, Twitter erupted in renewed use of hashtags like #whitewashedOUT, and some actors and writers had some choice words for the news:
Clearly, Lionsgate (the distributor of the film) thought bringing the Deadpool actor would boost the film’s visibility, but casting him as this role is absolutely baffling. Perhaps the conversation went something like this: “Oh, all these other films have whitewashed Asian characters and got completely dragged by everybody for doing so, and also most of them failed at the box office, so we GOTTA get in on this.”