The first official still of Scarlett Johansson in 'Ghost in the Shell' (Image: Warner Bros Pictures)
The live action adaptation of Japanese anime, Ghost in the Shell
, recently released the first official image
of Scarlett Johansson, who plays the lead character believed to be inspired by Motoko Kusanagi. The online reaction hasn't been pleasant:
The term to describe this move is "whitewashing" (casting white actors in non-white character roles) and there has been many calls for Hollywood to stop overlooking actors based on their race.
Sadly, this isn’t the first time that Asian characters are completely Westernised and replaced by white actors and actresses. Take a look at some below:
Avatar: The Last Airbender movie cast white actors for its main leads
The lead characters were originally people of colour, but were played by white actors. (Image: www.the-artiface.com)
Emma Stone as Allison Ng in Aloha, who's supposed to be of Chinese and Hawaiian descent
Which part of Emma Stone is Asian...? (Image: www.popsugar.com)
Justin Chatwin as Goku in Dragonball: Evolution
We doubt any Dragon Ball fans would acknowledge this movie's existence. (Image: www.wikipedia.com)
Rooney Mara as Tiger Lily in Pan
The original Tiger Lily (Image: www.themarysue.com)
Jim Sturgess as Hae-Joo Chang in Cloud Atlas
Hollywood tried some bomoh magic to turn Jim Sturgess into an Asian (Image: www.complex.com)
Anyway, we hope that this ridiculous tradition goes away for good, and that the movie industry stop turning the other way when it comes to representing actors of colour.
We recommend watching John Oliver's commentary on whitewashing to understand more about the issue (and get some laughs from it).