jump to last post 1-17 of 17 discussions (46 posts)

Do you think Hollywood is racist?

  1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
    Stevennix2001posted 6 years ago

    Although I can't say I agree with this article, as I could list a TON of contradictions about it.  However, I'll gladly keep my mouth shut to see what you hubbers out there have to say about it first, before I put in my two cents.  Anyway, here's the link if you want to check it out, where some movie critics are giving such blockbuster films like "Prince of Persia" and "the last airbender" bad reviews based on the fact that they casted caucasion actors as the leads instead.  Anyway, please don't be afraid to share your thoughts, and please try to be respectful to each other here when you debate this.  Thank you.

    Here's the link that goes into more detail.

    http://movies.yahoo.com/news/movies.ap. … ewashed-ap

    1. 61
      visuthanposted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Well, there are Caucasian looking peoples in Arabia (middle-east I mean)... So its ok for the Prince to be Caucasian. I have to admit that it would have been a little bit better if they had given Jake a bit more tan. Airbender is an entirely different story. Whereas PoP has always been an american take on a persian prince and doesn't really have much of a source material, Airbender is a story that was deliberately researched and written as more of an Asian adventure. So Airbender is not acceptable. I'm Indian, and trust me I will never accept a black Superman - it doesn't mean I'm racist - its just that some things about some stories shouldn't be changed. What I don't get is why is it so unacceptable to make a movie with Asian protagonists when the original series had Asian looking protagonists and was a big hit?

    2. CarltheCritic1291 profile image88
      CarltheCritic1291posted 5 years ago in reply to this

      I don't think that "Prince of Persia," and "The Last Airbender" were bad because they had Caucasian actors as leads, they were bad because of the fact that the movies were terrible. "Prince of Persia," for example was bad because it was predictable, the actors themselves were horrible, and the direction was as clear was dirty window. Similar things can be said about "The Last Airbender," but the bigger issue with that film was that it was a horrible representation of the original series, and M. Night Shyamalan's reputation is steadily getting worse and worse (not because of race, but because his movies (not including "Six Sense," "Signs," and "The Village") are all terrible.)
      The Director for "Prince of Persia," has a similar reputation, (remember "Four Weddings and a Funeral" that was this guy) his reputation was damaged for an even longer time even before the sorry excuse for a movie "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire," which was just awful. So whoever has said that "Hollywood is racist" or  "'Prince of Persia' and 'The Last Airbender' casted Caucasians as their lead actors" might need to watch the movie for them selves to see how bad these movies really are.

      1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
        Stevennix2001posted 5 years ago in reply to this

        I agree with all your points.  Although I wouldn't say "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" is that bad of a movie.  Sure it wasn't great, but still.

  2. skyfire profile image74
    skyfireposted 6 years ago

    Some directors are, can't blame entire hollywood for that.

    1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
      Stevennix2001posted 6 years ago in reply to this

      that's true, but do you think it's right that these critics are asking their readers to boycott the film solely based on who the leads are?

      1. skyfire profile image74
        skyfireposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        No, it's not right.

  3. optimus grimlock profile image60
    optimus grimlockposted 6 years ago

    We're all raciest to a certain extent. asking if hollywood is raciest is like asking if theres weight issues there.smile

    1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
      Stevennix2001posted 6 years ago in reply to this

      so are you saying that you agree with them asking people to boycott these movies?

    2. Glimmer515 profile image84
      Glimmer515posted 6 years ago in reply to this

      Optimus i totally agree!! Everyone is to a certain extent, Hollywood is just doing whats going to bring in the most cash, thats not their fault its all of society (if were gonna blame anyone)

  4. kerryg profile image87
    kerrygposted 6 years ago

    I don't think most people in Hollywood are consciously racist, but like the rest of American society, they tend to regard heterosexual white males as the default and to assume that heterosexual white male characters are what the greatest number of people will be able to relate to. I think that assumption is erroneous and insulting to both minorities and heterosexual white males, but that's just the way it is, and it permeates society on all levels, including Hollywood and the media.

    Just compare the John Roberts and Sonia Sotomayor confirmation hearings for an example. People were up in arms over whether Sotomayor's identity as a Latina would affect her judgments, but it never occurred to anybody to question whether Roberts' identity as a white heterosexual male would affect his, even though his identity is just as likely to influence his views as hers is.

    1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
      Stevennix2001posted 6 years ago in reply to this

      wow, that's the best answer I've seen on this forum so far, and I agree with you completely.  Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us, as I know I couldn't have said it better myself.

  5. leeberttea profile image59
    leebertteaposted 6 years ago

    I'm sick and tired of all the political correctness! If I'm going to risk my money on making a movie with the intention of generating a return on that investment, then I'm going to do what I think will bring me the highest reward. If that means casting a white actor to play Nelson Mandela or Barack Obama, then that's what I'm going to do. Since when is a part in a movie required to reflect history accurately? Should Hollywood be required to find and cast an actual Cheshire cat for Alice in Wonderland? Or should there have been multiple versions with different races and cultures playing Alice?
    It's a movie, if you don't like the casting, don't go, or better yet, make your own movie!

    1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
      Stevennix2001posted 6 years ago in reply to this

      lol. well said.  personally, I could care less what the ethnicity of the characters are, as long as the film remains faithful to the heart of the original source and the movie turns out to be good.  That's generally all I care about.  As far as actors who are cast in these movies, I can understand why they were probably cast as Kerry just mentioned earlier, but that doesn't mean we should judge them based solely on their race.  I mean seriously. 

      In the "Shawshank Redemption", the character Red was originally a white man with red hair.  Hence the name RED!  However, did critics cry foul over that?  No, it was still just as moving of a story anyway.  I can see if racial ethnicity played a key factor in who the character was as a person.  (i.e. Marvel Comics' Black Panther)  Then I could see why people would get upset over that if a white guy was cast to play an African Prince.  However, in "The last airbender" anime inspired show, they don't even have the same freaking countries or nations.  As even some of their animators will tell you that it takes place within a fictional world, that does incorporate Asian and India influences.  However, that doesn't mean the characters themselves are Asian and/or from India descent.  Sure, you can argue otherwise.  But in the end, it's still a fictional universe.  Besides, I don't remember any nation being once called the fire nation or people being able to bend elements from history books, have any of you? 

      As far as Prince of Persia goes, I think the critics are right to some degree that the Persian ethnicity does play a key role in who the prince is.  Having said that though, that doesn't mean I'm not going at least give Jake Gyllenhaal a chance to prove himself on the big screen.  and neither should anyone else.  Besides, he might actually do great justice to the role.  Was David Carradine really of Asian descent when he starred in the "Kung Fu" tv series?  Yet to this day people still immortalize him in that role.  Therefore, we'll have to wait and see.

  6. Cagsil profile image82
    Cagsilposted 6 years ago

    Hollywood a racist?

    To be a racist? One individual has to have a racist view.

    Can Hollywood even have a collective racist view? Most would think not, because most of the time these people cannot get along with themselves, much less others outside of Hollywood.

    Just a thought.

    1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
      Stevennix2001posted 6 years ago in reply to this

      you didn't read the link did you?  hmm

      1. Cagsil profile image82
        Cagsilposted 6 years ago in reply to this

        Your right. I did not read your link and did not do so for a reason. It media spin anyways, to divide up or separate people.

        That's most of what media, even those who report on celebrities, have been doing for the last decade or longer.

        Everything in America is now being demonized and our own President is agreeing with the rest of the world who believe it.

        It is absurd.

        1. Origin profile image59
          Originposted 6 years ago in reply to this

          I think it goes along with the thinking that.... bad news.. is good news! big_smile

          1. Cagsil profile image82
            Cagsilposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            Actually, in a way you would be right, but the thinking is NO publicity is bad, any publicity(good or bad) is good. wink

            1. Origin profile image59
              Originposted 6 years ago in reply to this

              I was talking about it from the perception of the media site reporting the article. It's a rather large common belief that "bad media, is good media" in the sense that it keeps people watching the screen.. such as murder, death, rape, car accidents, race stuff, etc.

        2. Stevennix2001 profile image83
          Stevennix2001posted 6 years ago in reply to this

          yep, you do make a good point there.  sometimes I think some journalists care more about reporting whatever they feel will generate a good story, rather than actually reporting the news.

          1. Cagsil profile image82
            Cagsilposted 6 years ago in reply to this

            Steve, please realize, a Journalist? is only out for a story, any story, good or bad, and not necessarily news worthy, if you get my drift(nor should it be news worth). wink

            1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
              Stevennix2001posted 6 years ago in reply to this

              you speak like i wasn't agreeing with you or that im some kind of naive person there.  as i thought i was agreeing with you, but in my own words.  i guess i didn't make that perfectly clear enough.  lol

              1. Cagsil profile image82
                Cagsilposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                I wasn't Steve. I knew you were agreeing with me, I just wanted to point out what I did. Hence, why I phrased my statement the way I did. If you found it condescending? I'm not sure why. But, let's leave it at that. It was not my intention. hmm

                1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
                  Stevennix2001posted 6 years ago in reply to this

                  Nah, I didn't find it condescending.  I was just joking with you, so I left a laughing icon at the end.  I apologize if I made you feel that way though.  Believe me, I think another thing about the media is that they're biased as well.  Especially when it comes to religion and politics, as you can rarely find an unbiased source.

                  1. Cagsil profile image82
                    Cagsilposted 6 years ago in reply to this

                    Of course media is bias. Each operate on the Agenda of it's owners. hmm  They are not interested in truth? They are interested in what sells to the pubic, either in magazines/newspapers or online or on TV. And, half the time, what is considered news worthy, isn't news worthy. hmm

  7. Thorn058 profile image79
    Thorn058posted 6 years ago

    What part of the movie making process are they condemning? Certainly there are always going to be individuals with in a society that have certain racial leanings. I don't think any of the mainstream directors and producers are blatantly racist otherwise they wouldn't be mainstream yet I can see some of the fringe doing so.

    I think that it is more of a reflection of America than anything else. They give us what we want and expect in order to make money. I mean lets be realistic most of the major studies study demographics and know who they are targeting when they make these films. Is a film about white gang members going to be a huge box office draw? Well not unless it is a period piece and even then big name actors can't help it gain mass appeal. No if you are making a movie about gangs people expect the main characters to be black or Hispanic. If you are making a martial arts film are you casting Orlando Bloom as the lead or Jet Li? You cat Jet Li because while Bloom might bring in the young women and those curious to see how they made it work but it will have no staying power while jet lI is going to bring in that critical 18-35 male demo that will drive repeat busines and concession sales that is just the way it is.

    I remember sitting in a packed theater opening weekend for Adam Sandler's Funny people because everyone though Sandler plus comedy equals smash hit and belly aching laughter but as the movie ended that crowd was confused. The movie while being funny at times was more a dramatic look at real comedians life and they just didn't know how to handle that. Sandler in a comedy they get, Sandler in drama they have a hard time with. So again we as a society kind of dictate what we want the studios to make.

    So you take the Prince of Persia and while an actor of a more Persian persuasion might have worked better in the role it is your big blockbuster date night adventure movie. So you cast a wide net in order to give the people what they want in order to make money. You cast a current heartthrob in the lead regardless of if is he is white to get the ladies there. You offer big special effects, explosions and sexy eye candy(again white chick)to get that important 18-35 male demographic and you bring in a few established stars like a Ben Kingsly to add flavor because that is what sells in America.

    I mean draw your conclusions from that, if they do appear racist maybe it is because they are giving us what we want so what does that make us?

  8. optimus grimlock profile image60
    optimus grimlockposted 6 years ago

    no banning movies is stupid. Price of persia should not be seen by anyone tho! The last airbender loos awesome, cant wait to see it! The main character is played by an asian kid in the movie by the way.

    1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
      Stevennix2001posted 6 years ago in reply to this

      actually, i hate to correct you, but your wrong about that.  the kid noah ringer, is actually white and NOT of asian descent.  in fact, that was part of the reason why this article was written as many critics didn't like the idea of the main characters being changed from their original alleged ancestories.

  9. Cagsil profile image82
    Cagsilposted 6 years ago

    TV - not what it use to be, something of value.
    CABLE - not worth the value cable companies put on the product.
    Theaters = too expensive for the average person to afford.

    Were all worth going to at one point. And, now they are completely not worth the effort to watch anymore. There is no diversity on TV/CABLE at all.

    All TV shows are similar or run a storyline that has been rehashed over and over.

    And, now if you look at Hollywood(overall)- the movies haven't been great or declining in the past decade.

    The question is how did we get to this point? A thought worth pondering. wink big_smile

  10. Daniel Carter profile image91
    Daniel Carterposted 6 years ago

    M. Knight Shyamalan is in pretty dire straits these days having some real bombs at the box office. He's got to make "Last Airbender" a box office hit, or go home. His party is either on the verge of starting, or ending.

    White washing is not accurate at all, since Shyamalan himself is not white. He's doing this purely by the numbers, by the talent that support the numbers.

    There is no white washing in Hollywood these days. The only white washing would be from a few renegades and independents with an agenda. The article is yellow journalism. Having spent some time there over the past year or so in business and other dealings, I've met a lot of people in the industry, and I can honestly say that they seem genuinely color blind. Even Bollywood is getting nods from Hollywood, recently. To ignore what's going on in Indian movies would be stupidity.

    The article is not worth a cent, in my opinion.

    And I might add, that I didn't like Prince of Persia at ALL. Jake is incredible in the show. The special effects, are fabulous, but the story is an adaptation of several stories with a very, very, very disappointing ending. However, most movie goers who are Disney freaks will love it. Jake it the lead because he's bankable. And after discovering what training he did to do his own stunts, and to be in the incredible shape he's in, he certainly earned his money and stepped up the hero role for a lot of future archetype stories.  Just my opinion.

    1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
      Stevennix2001posted 6 years ago in reply to this

      all i can say is this "last airbender" movie is Shamalan last shot to make a hit movie.  For if it bombs, then I have a good feeling his career is essentially going to be dead if it wasn't already.

  11. khmohsin profile image60
    khmohsinposted 6 years ago

    we are surrounded with different natured people.. so sometimes have to compromise on some clauses. doesn't matter,
    We follow the latest creations and good ideas on Hollywood

  12. 0
    ryankettposted 5 years ago

    There are plenty of successful black and asian hollywood actors and actresses, aren't there? Morgan Freeman, Eddie Murphy, Denzel Washington, Halle Berry, Will Smith, Chris Rock, Jackie Chan.... Whoppie Goldberg? I can't think of many more right now, but I'm not a movie buff... But are there any big white or african actors and actresses in Bollywood? Or white or Asian in Nollywood? Think that answers the question in a global context, applying relativity.

  13. knolyourself profile image60
    knolyourselfposted 5 years ago

    Sopranos HBO may have been the second best production produced in America. My
    opinion and any number of critics was that The Wire HBO is the best production produced in America. Sopranos a million awards. The Wire not even one nomination. What's the difference? The Wire with 70 characters was 70% black. What else could it be?

  14. No Relation Produ profile image59
    No Relation Produposted 5 years ago

    I don't want to throw in my two cents worth so much as I want to expand the chatter with a few points.

    The first is test audiences; Hollywood tend to do things so that they don't upset massive amounts of their audince members. If you are posing the question of whether or not the film industry is racist - isn't it all really a reflection of societies beliefs? I'm just giving food for thought.

    Another point is that when Halle Berry won her first oscar she was the first best female to be a coloured woman...It wasn't that long ago either. I think maybe Hollywood is evolving its views to a more modern way of thinking as a result of the shifting attitudes of society as a whole. I also think that though it is late it is better late than never.

    1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
      Stevennix2001posted 5 years ago in reply to this

      Very true.  You make a lot of good points there. smile

      1. No Relation Produ profile image59
        No Relation Produposted 5 years ago in reply to this

        thank ye smile

  15. 2besure profile image82
    2besureposted 5 years ago

    Judging from the Academy Awards, there is little or no representation of other races.  I guess that is why the Hispanic community and the Black community had to create the own awards.  There are not many leading roles for people of color other then the same token blacks and Hispanics; forget about roles for other races.

    1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
      Stevennix2001posted 5 years ago in reply to this

      hmm...I have some mixed feelings about this post.  On the one hand, there's a lot of films even today that play on racial stereotypes like "I Now Pronounce You Chuck and Larry."  However, there are quite a few that don't like "Pursuit of Happyness", or "Invictus" to name a few.  however, I do see your point, but I'm not sure if I would agree with it completely.  Sure, there's many films that endorse and promote racial stereotypes, but there have been ones in the that past that don't.

  16. Flightkeeper profile image79
    Flightkeeperposted 5 years ago

    I just get so annoyed at how everyone is trying politicize things including movies.  What's the beef with this one, because they've used white actors instead of asian actors?  Well duh, it's an American movie production aimed at Americans and right now, they're mostly white.  What film doesn't want to aim for the highest number of audiences?  Remember that old Robin Hood movie with Kevin Costner, Morgan Freeman and Elizabeth Mastroantonio -- all Americans not British, did we care what the Brits were saying, no! Then the Brits went out and made their own movie.  If they wanted Airbender to keep it true to the original characters, why didn't some Asian director make the movie instead?

    Now having said that, the film suffered whatever consequences resulting from making those changes.  In the end the movie is an adaptation not the original and should be judged as a movie.  And if any Asian directors want to make a remake then go do it.

    1. Stevennix2001 profile image83
      Stevennix2001posted 5 years ago in reply to this

      I feel the exact same way.  I don't see why people are in a uproar over the casting.  Sure, you can get pissed about it, but why should we boycott it over the ethnicity of the actors?  David Caradine played a Asian guy in "Kung Fu", and nobody seems to care, so why should we care now?  Personally, I think people shouldn't see the film because it was a god awful movie that poorly represents the original Anime, but NOT for the ethnicity of the actors.  Seriously, who really cares if you ask me?  Besides, if you want to get even more technical, "Shawshank Redemption" did the same thing when they cast "Red" with Morgan Freeman; in spite of the fact that the character is known in the book to be Caucasion with red hair.  However, i guess according to this critic, it's okay for that scenario but not for "Last airbender."  Personally, I'm with you on this, as I think some people breath too much into things sometimes.

      1. kerryg profile image87
        kerrygposted 5 years ago in reply to this

        Hmm, speaking as a fan of the TV show (but who hasn't seen the movie), it's a little more complicated than just switching the ethnicities of the main characters around.

        One of the big issues for a lot of people was that the three heroes were all recast as white actors but the villains were left as Asians.


        Shylaman also made some mystifyingly stupid changes to the plot that made things worse. For example, in the show at one point they free a bunch of Earth Benders from a Fire Nation prison ship that is made entirely of metal and very carefully constructed to make sure the Earth Benders couldn't get their hands on anything remotely soil or stone-like that they could use as a weapon. In the film, they're kept in a dirt prison yard instead and apparently it just never occurs to them to use the ground they're walking on as a weapon against the guards until the (now white) heroine (actually scratch that, apparently it's the hero who gets to inspire them now - female fans of the original series are pretty annoyed about the evisceration of Katara's character as well) comes along to inspire them. It has a nasty smack of paternalism to it that left a bad taste in a lot of people's mouths.

        There's a very detailed (7 pages, with supporting images and citations) run-down of more of these changes here: http://www.racebending.com/v4/campaigns … airbender/

        Contrast with the show: http://aang-aint-white.livejournal.com/1007.html

  17. optimus grimlock profile image60
    optimus grimlockposted 5 years ago

    in some cases hollywood is raciest, some roles are fit for certain actors color shouldnt mean anything. As for prince of persa anyone could of done a better job then bubble boy!!! An accent is't that hard to hold MR. gyllenhall!!!