Director Cameron Crowe ate some crow in his blog The Uncool.
He apologized for the casting of White actress Emma Stone as Allison Ng in his critically panned movie, Aloha..
Stone plays a part Hawaiian, part Chinese character, a casting choice that has been criticized in a movie set in the Asian American Pacific Islander majority state of Hawaii.
“I have heard your words and your disappointment, and I offer you a heart-felt apology to all who felt this was an odd or misguided casting choice. As far back as 2007, Captain Allison Ng was written to be a super-proud ¼ Hawaiian who was frustrated that, by all outward appearances, she looked nothing like one. A half-Chinese father was meant to show the surprising mix of cultures often prevalent in Hawaii. Extremely proud of her unlikely heritage, she feels personally compelled to over-explain every chance she gets. The character was based on a real-life, red-headed local who did just that.”
The Media Action Network for Asian Americans (MANAA) has been vocal about the lack of Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders cast in any significant speaking roles.
“Caucasians only make up 30 percent of the population [of Hawaii], but from watching this film, you’d think they made up 99 percent,” says MANAA’s Guy Aoki, a former resident of Hawaii.
“This comes in a long line of films — The Descendants, 50 First Dates, Blue Crush, Pearl Harbor — that uses Hawaii for its exotic backdrop but goes out of its way to exclude the very people who live there. It’s an insult to the diverse culture and fabric of Hawaii.”
Just yesterday, it was reported that Crowe has cast White actress Jacqueline Byers as Natalie Shin, a common Korean and Chinese surname, in the Showtime comedy, Roadies. However, it has not been confirmed that the character is Asian American.
Are you pleased that Crowe has apologized or do you question the sincerity of his apology?