Racism is and always will be a huge part of society no matter how hard we try to change it. There’s no erasing it completely because people will always have their opinions about different races. Racism goes further than just jabs at different races. Racism can happen just from people not appreciating certain cultures. There’s also cultural appropriation happening in today’s society, but the biggest thing that really ticks me off about society today is the fact that Hollywood thinks that it’s okay to whitewash certain roles in movies. There are so many different movies that have gotten a lot of criticism from people just from white washing alone. Two examples of these films that have been whitewashed are the most recent release of Pan and The Hunger Games Trilogy.
Tiger Lily, in the movie Pan, should have been cast as someone with the Native American background because that is what the character is. It’s even shown in the Disney animated version of Peter Pan that Tiger Lily is Native American; therefore, the actress should have had Native American heritage. Instead, Hollywood chose a Caucasian woman, Rooney Mara, to portray her. Rooney Mara is a phenomenal actress, but personally she was not right for the role.
Katniss Everdeen, from The Hunger Games, was described to be olive skinned, black hair, and grey eyes in the books. Hollywood decided to cast Jennifer Lawrence for the role instead of searching for someone that had all the right characteristics described in the novels. Of course, movies based on books are only interpretations; Hollywood should understand that with those novels comes a pretty devoted fan base already.
Hollywood has to be one of those businesses that still allows racism and whitewashing, which is a shame. Sure, there are many black actors and actresses getting noticed for their phenomenal performances, but how many years did it take for it to happen? Whitewashing and racism within Hollywood won’t stop unless people finally take a stand against it. Roles that should have gone to actors and actresses that were more qualified for the actual role should be recognized and taken more seriously because they are people too. Passing over them just because Hollywood thinks that no one will watch the movie/TV show anymore is a pathetic reason for such behavior.
What are your thoughts on this matter? Do you think Hollywood should stop whitewashing and allowing racism to show through? Who do you think should have played the role of Katniss Everdeen if the directors and writers went by the books description? Do you think the role of Tiger Lily should have been played by someone of Native American descent?