So there has recently been some accusations of whitewashing of Natalie Portman’s character in the upcoming movie Annihilation from Ex Machina director Alex Garland.
Basically in the series this movie is based off of, character Natalie Portman plays is supposedly Asian due to a brief description of her facial features. But here is the thing though: that isn’t brought up till the 2nd book, which hadn’t come out when Alex Garland was first developing this movie. In fact Alex Garland has said it himself that he only intended to adapt the first book, Annihilation, rather than the whole series.
It’s always frustrating whenever these controversies come up in Entertainment news media. While I want to see different people show off their talent, whenever it’s brought up it’s always the same circle jerk – “This movie has too much white people” or “How dare you change the race of this character” and at times even grounded in ignorance. Heck people had also accused the Netflix tv series Altered Carbon of whitewashing for having an Asian character put in the body of a white man – even though that was a major plot point in the original book.
What really frustrates me about these controversies and complaints is that there is a huge double standard when it comes to whether or not you are allowed to race bend a character. The thing is that it’s seen as a social crime for Natalie Portman to play this character, and yet it was fine for Idris Elba to play the gunslinger, a character who was described in the book as white and has been drawn as white with it even playing into a major plot point in the 2nd book, in the abysmal Dark Tower movie.
And as for the not enough diversity narrative pushed by these journalists, these are the same people calling Black Panther, a movie with a 90% black cast, the “most diverse movie ever!!!”.
It’s just I wonder if Natalie Portman’s character had instead been played by an African American actress would there have been any complaints.
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