'#Death Note,' one of the most well known animes to have ever been brought into the world, was announced that it would be getting a feature film release in 2017. Like most film or television show releases, there were very mixed opinions from fans of the anime and fans of other Death Note-related productions as well. Though most of us usually take our criticisms or reservations about something on merely a surface level, with this one, we have to be especially critical.
The issue of whitewashing in Hollywood
Most people going about their regular movie watching experience ignore or are unaware of the fact that there are many racial prejudices going on behind closed doors. Privileged, able-bodied white actors and actresses were given the roles of the most central of characters in this soon to be live action reboot. Seeing as this is an anime, which are of Japanese origin, this type of under-representation and mentality portrayed by this decision in the media is extremely harmful.
One personal account of this racism experienced in Hollywood, is the refusal of an audition from Edward Zo. The reasoning behind the refusal is that he is "too Asian." Zo went on to say that it would have been a great opportunity for actors of color as well as Asian actors to expand into the global stage and eliminate harmful stereotypes, but they were not looking to seek Asian actors out for the role of Light Yagami.
In the heat of this issue, Zo also created and released a video on his YouTube channel, EdwardZo, re-hashing the experience he went through while trying to get cast for the role. He analyzed the blatant racism presented in #Hollywood and gave personal perspectives on the matter. As Zo put it, it is socially irresponsible to continue to whitewash films. Productions that have been whitewashed are constantly flopping and receiving backlash, yet nothing is being changed as it continues to happen each and every day.
Think about it:
As people are becoming more and more aware of the problems in Hollywood as well as in our society in general, they wonder when this foolishness and ignorance will cease. We all need to continue to educate, learn, and promote responsible practices in our daily lives and in the workplace. Perpetuating harmful ideals and stereotypes isn't getting anyone anywhere, and it's holding people back from their potential. Think about it. #whitewashing