Racism looms over 'Hunger Games' sequel casting1:17 pm - 05/10/2012
Racism looms over 'Hunger Games' sequel casting
Who knew that race would become such a contentious issue for the movie adaptations of Suzanne Collins' "Hunger Games" trilogy?
While Collins' novels and first film in the series were, of course, not without controversy -- they do centre on a society that battles children to the death for entertainment after all -- race never played any kind of implicit or explicit role in the stories. Tell that to some very vocal and blatantly racist "Hunger Games" fans, who have repeatedly taken issue with the casting of minority actors for certain roles. The latest instance sees those negative fans weigh in on a fan campaign to have a black actor cast as the character Finnick Odair in the upcoming sequel, "Catching Fire."
It all started during the lead-up to the release of "The Hunger Games" movie, with some fans voicing complaints about some of the casting choices -- specifically, they were upset that actors of colour were cast. After seeing the film, many tweeters also let their feelings about the actors playing the characters of Rue and Thresh, and it wasn't pretty. Here's a sampling of some of the unfortunate and outright bigoted comments.
"Why does rue have to be black. Not gonna lie, kinda ruined the movie," read one comment.
"Awkward moment when Rue is some black girl and not the innocent blonde girl you picture," read another.
And another: "Call me racist but when i found out rue was black her death wasn't as sad #ihatemyself"
Who needs proper grammar and punctuation when you're already ignorant? These so-called fans apparently missed the part in the books when Collins described the characters in question as having "dark brown skin." Director Gary Ross decided to be faithful to this description for the film version, and in keeping with Collins's depiction, the actors chosen to play the characters in the film (Amandla Stenberg and Dayo Okeniyi) were of African American descent.
Similarly, the fan campaign to have the half-Swedish, half-African American actor Jesse Williams ("Cabin in the Woods," "Grey's Anatomy") cast as Finnick reflects Collins' description of the character from the "Catching Fire" novel. Described as having "tan skin," "bronze-colored hair," and "sea green eyes," one look at Williams makes him seem ideal for the part. The actor fits the bill to a tee, but that hasn't stopped fans from decrying the suggestion based on his race.
"finnick is supposed to be a blonde white boy and that's that people!" said one commenter on Perez Hilton.
"im not trying to be racist or anything but i always pictured finick as a blonde white boy. its not that i dont like jesse because he is colored," said another commenter.
A sure-fire way to convince people that you're not racist is to start a sentence with "I'm not trying to be racist" and then proceed to call the person you're talking about "colored." Thankfully, the majority of the commenters liked the choice of Williams and took the others to task over their remarks.
More at the Source... Where the writer of the article also notes that there was no such outcry over the casting of Jennifer Lawrence, a blue eyed blonde, as the main character in the film, despite said character being described in the book as having dark hair, olive skin, and grey eyes.
This sh*t just makes me so angry. WTF, white people??