Another pointless petition to sign

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Another pointless petition to sign

Postby Sterling on Mon May 18, 2009 9:29 pm

Noone important ever actually pays attention to these online petition things, especially not this one but it's the thought that counts, right?

Join me in protesting the unethical casting of "The Last Airbender". To paraphrase what Hoss said when I told him how the cast of Avatar: The Last Airbender had been whitewashed for a live-action release despite the characters in the animation being of East-Asian or Iniuit ethnicity, this is total bullcrap.

http://www.petitiononline.com/racebend/petition.html

To: John Lesher, President, Paramount Film Group

[This is the official petition of www.racebending.com. It will be delivered to MANAA, EWP, and one of the leaders of AAW will personally see that it physically makes it to the Kennedy/Marshall production office in Santa Monica and to other desks at Paramount. We will ensure that it gets to the people who need to see it.


To view the complete letter, please visit:
http://racebending.com/petition

---

This letter constitutes an official statement by the grassroots movement protesting the discrimination evidenced in the Paramount Pictures production of The Last Airbender. The film is adapted from the popular animated series, Avatar: The Last Airbender, which was widely advertised by Nickelodeon executives, the show’s creators, and director M. Night Shyamalan as set in an Asian fantasy world. The practice of casting Caucasian actors to depict ethnically Asian protagonists—while Asian American actors are relegated to play antagonists, supporting characters, and background extras—is insensitive, condescending, and woefully outdated.

The Last Airbender is alienating and losing potential audience members. Despite our love for the animated series, the most vocal of us have actively rejected the production’s cultural incompetencies through protests and over one hundred letters. Many more fans and members of the general public will passively reject this film by voting with their wallets.

Ethnically Asian characters should never be depicted by Caucasian actors. In this day and age, casting white actors to play Asian characters--even going so far as to "whitewash" the Asian fantasy setting—is simply ignorant and unacceptable. These choices have taken the film away from the integrity and dedication to cultural accuracy that fans respected in the animated series, and unless those decisions are reversed, we will reject this movie and do everything in our power to ensure The Last Airbender’s financial failure.

As fans of the original television show, we still hold the highest level of respect for the Avatar: The Last Airbender animated series and its depiction of an Asian fantasy world. We desperately want to support The Last Airbender film, but we cannot in good conscience support its current incarnation and the generations of Hollywood discrimination it represents.

We, the undersigned, urge Paramount Pictures to delay the filming of The Last Airbender until the production can affirm a commitment to ethical casting practices by recasting the leads with ethnically Asian actors.

Sincerely,

The Undersigned


http://www.petitiononline.com/racebend/petition.html

Of course, I've never seen the show and have no idea if it's even that good or if the information I've been given is actually true, but oh well, it's too late now.
What you call love was invented by guys like me, to sell nylons. You're born alone and you die alone and this world just drops a bunch of rules on top of you to make you forget those facts. But I never forget. I'm living like there's no tomorrow, because there isn't one.
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby Ryudo on Mon May 18, 2009 9:38 pm

What the hell I will but I rather just continue to boycott most hollywood films anyway just because they put out so much shit and remakes and other crap..this is just another reason.

Older films and independent/foreign films are better overall IMO.
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby Old Man OL on Thu May 21, 2009 5:10 am

Avon wrote:Of course, I've never seen the show and have no idea if it's even that good or if the information I've been given is actually true, but oh well, it's too late now.


:|
Then why would you even bother posting this?
I mean, this is the first I've heard of the casting (have to look more up on it), and as a fan of the first season of the show (never saw beyond that) I think it's horrible that they're going with a white-dominated cast...
I'm just confused as to why you would even care enough to make a topic about it?

Regardless, I've just looked it up and seen photos of the actors in question... and this really is awful. Sokka and Katara, blatantly dark-skinned asian characters in the show, are being played by the pastiest goddamn white kids they could find.
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Strangest of all is the fact that M. Night Shyamalan is directing. You'd think, being a dark-skinned variation on the asian race himself, he'd be a little more sensitive to things like this.
Terrible news, though, and I'll surely boycott the fuck out of the movie if they stick with this disgustingly anglo cast. I mean, Jesse McCartney as Prince Zuko... ick. That really does repulse me a great deal.
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby Sterling on Thu May 21, 2009 6:38 pm

I don't understand why I should have to explain my motives. There have been a rash of these kinds of projects being casted in this way which I made a point of railing against on the old forum. 21, Dragonball, Speed Racer to name a few. Not to mention a countless number of films where asian actors have been casted in stereotypical roles, with males as ineffectual asexual and/or abusive and females as objectified, shy in need of a white knight to save them.
What you call love was invented by guys like me, to sell nylons. You're born alone and you die alone and this world just drops a bunch of rules on top of you to make you forget those facts. But I never forget. I'm living like there's no tomorrow, because there isn't one.
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby Yukupo on Fri May 22, 2009 6:10 pm

^Granted, females have been portrayed that way for a long time in both cultures.
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby tao on Sat May 23, 2009 10:22 pm

I never heard about a live action Avatar movie. I've stopped following the show but from what I've seen, the Last Airbender is a a pretty solid show. Despite it being "Americanized anime," I felt the people behind the show did a great job on their research of different cultures, martial arts styles, etc. I know they would object fiercely to the casting choice as well. Gawd, somebody shoot those damned execs already. They're toxic to the entertainment industry.
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby Ryudo on Sun May 24, 2009 5:49 am

I see this as no less offensive than when whites were cast as native americans or did blackface.

Also in old films like Breakfast at Tiffanie's when they had the buck tooth asian landlord.

I mean come on some one needs to rip these assholes balls off with burning hot plyers they drown them with drano. Then get some people in the studios with some fucking sense to run the place.
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby JoePesci on Tue May 26, 2009 8:04 am

So no one petitions that the voice is dubbed over by white people but when they can actually see white people playing them they get all pissy. Who cares, it is a movie and it is casted already, shooting, and in no way will this petition effect anything. Do we really need a movie based on a simplistic children's television show to be a masterpiece of cinema?
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby Sterling on Tue May 26, 2009 6:23 pm

It has nothing to do with making a masterpiece of the film, noone cares whether the film is good or not. (Well I guess ome people do) The problem here is instituationalsed racism and the perpetuation of stereotypes. For a picture such as this which was reliant on certain ethnic groups providing the entire basis for their story it is totally ridiculous that it has been white-washed and is just one of a myriad examples of people within the entertainment promoting white supremacy. That might be a little bit extreme, but you get the idea. It's an insidious form of propaganda, and often white people such as yourself do not understand because it does not affect them and accuse those who see through it of wearing foil hats. I assure you, this is real.
What you call love was invented by guys like me, to sell nylons. You're born alone and you die alone and this world just drops a bunch of rules on top of you to make you forget those facts. But I never forget. I'm living like there's no tomorrow, because there isn't one.
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby JoePesci on Mon Jun 01, 2009 7:35 pm

EDIT: Haha, you're forgetting the director is Indian. As you said, it is a little extreme. I can't really think of a Chinese film featuring main player white people, or a Korean film starring black people. It is an American adaptation of an Asian television show. Most Americans happen to be white. That is that they react better to seeing lead characters that they can relate to. Even if one of those things is being of the same skin color. It is racist, but I believe by happenstance. I think that if the studios believed Asians would pull in more money, they would cast them in the lead roles.


...The funniest thing about this is that I agree that Asians should have been casted in the lead roles. Like a real German should have been casted in the lead for Valkyrie instead of Cruise. I believe Hollywood is only looking for money, not making personal statements. They fucked up, but isn't that what they always do?
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby Sterling on Sat Jun 06, 2009 3:49 pm

The fact he's Indian makes it even more ridiculous because he should be conscious of this stuff. It is incorrect to equate the number of people of different ethnicities in east-Asian films. First of all, those countries are not typically multi-cultural, secondly their film industry comes up with its own ideas rather than ripping off every single game, foreign film, tv show etc. with existing characters they can find.

I think the stereotypes that exist are dangerous. Whether they exist becausxe the studio is trying to make money or not is irrelevant, they tend to be very insulting and damaging and the culture needs to be changed. The best way to do that is infiltration of the industry by our kind and investment in more representative films / tv shows.
What you call love was invented by guys like me, to sell nylons. You're born alone and you die alone and this world just drops a bunch of rules on top of you to make you forget those facts. But I never forget. I'm living like there's no tomorrow, because there isn't one.
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby JoePesci on Tue Jun 23, 2009 11:23 pm

Well, the whole white supremacy thing seems strange to me, for when the film releases, the opening title will read, and then bam, in huge letters: An M. Night Shyamalan Film will appear.

I just think they would have totally white washed the whole process if they were trying to make a racist statement. Hollywood is actually a very liberal group, and America is more diverse than ever. I think the reaction to this film's casting should be focused further on the travesty to authenticity than a race conspiracy. I mean, I would probably buy into it a lot more if Hollywood weren't so obviously accepting of homsexuality and race. Sean Penn and Dustin Lance Black just won for Milk, and Forest Whitaker and It's Hard Out Here For A Pimp won not too many years ago (Although you may find this all irrelevant). Plus, Slumdog Millionaire won best Picture at the Oscars and pretty much every other award ceremony that is globally admired and tuned into. The academy is made up of all different sorts of Hollywood types, so I really can't buy into the race conspiracy.

However, I do feel that Studio execs are complete idiots and casting authentically is a problem. I would love to join you in a crusade to infiltrate Hollywood and expose the stupidity, but I feel like it is being taken too radically.
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby Sterling on Wed Jun 24, 2009 6:36 pm

Oh man, I'm sorry don't take this personal, so many people just don't get it.

These people who you call "liberal" which includes a good chunk of people who live in west coast urban environments encompassing Hollywood are actually some of the least tolerant people you're ever likely to find anywhere in the world. Yeah, they're accepting of gays, and drug use, and whatever else. You know what they are not accepting of? Anyone at all who dares to disagree with them. Just witness the kind of shit that the Prop8 protesters were pulling, vandalising Mormon churches, intimidating black and latino neighbourhoods which were mostly in favour of Prop 8. Check out someone like Hayden who, hot though she is, makes completely brainless political statements and pours the hate on everyone who disagrees with her. She's just a kid too, they get 'em young, with both political messages (schools have basically become indoctrination centres) and race imaging;

The only shows I can think of off the top of my head that got regular Asian guy characters in them are Heroes and Lost, and no one watches NBC so Heroes doesn't really count, and of the 4 characters, 3 of them are playing foreigners. There are more Asian women, but typically they all either mysteriously don't know a single other person of their race or got really oppressive parents. Oh yeah, I remember Dexter has Vince who is usually in it. Well, except in the wedding scene which every single other frakking person in the cast was in.

Sean Penn is a fucking asshole. I really can't stand that sanctimonious fuckwit. Let me tell you about people in Hollywood. They're paid to look good and pamper themselves. Not just the actors and directors, pretty much everyone who lives in that world connected to celebrity. They don't live a real life! They can hardly be called real citizens and they do not have realistic views of their country. They'd rather save a rain forest than save a country.

Black people are doing better in Hollywood because as an entire group they get their rage on when they are disrespected, even if there's little to no basis for it. The Asian American community hasn't followed suit, they've been mostly content to slide into the background and get fucked in the ass by white rule.

M.Night Shyamalan directed the film but he doesn't appear on screen. I'd guess the average person doesn't know what he looks like. Yeah, yeah ok I know he's actually always making appearances in his own films but no one really pays attention to some one minute cameo. Ang Lee has made like hundreds of films and I still got no idea what he looks like. If it wasn't for the name and me thinking hm, that's an odd name, sounds east-asian, I wouldn't even know he was Chinese. I didn't know who Shyamalan was until Unbreakable came out and someone said it by the same guy who did Sixth Sense.
What you call love was invented by guys like me, to sell nylons. You're born alone and you die alone and this world just drops a bunch of rules on top of you to make you forget those facts. But I never forget. I'm living like there's no tomorrow, because there isn't one.
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby Ryudo on Wed Jun 24, 2009 7:15 pm

I have seen what Ang Lee looks like and he did the motion captures for Hulk.

The guy who did Unbreakable I admit I have no idea what he looks like. I still can't believe he is the same guy who helped write and direct the mother fucking TERRRRRRRIBLE movie Signs also did the fantastic and underrated Unbreakable.
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Re: Another pointless petition to sign

Postby Yukupo on Thu Jun 25, 2009 7:17 pm

I realize I'm not adding anything meaningful here, but I laughed at this.

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