HomeAsian AmericansNew Whitewashing Controversy Takes Off Over Death Note

New Whitewashing Controversy Takes Off Over Death Note

More than 11,000 people have signed a petition protesting yet another example of whitewashing in the works.

The controversy erupted shortly after Netflix released its trailer last week for its adaptation of the popular Japanese manga Death Note.

Nat Wolff has been cast in the main role of Light Turner. The name of the character has been changed from Light Yagami in the original series.

The Petition on Care2 notes “the story itself is full of Japanese culture, history, and identity – and the Japanese narrative is essential to the plot and storytelling.”

In other words, wiping out any semblance of Japanese culture guts Death Note of its essence.

The uproar comes as another whitewashing controversy, Ghost in the Shell starring Scarlett Johansson, makes its national screen debut this Friday. In that movie, the writers didn’t even bother changing the characters name. Johannson will play Major Motoko Kusanagi.

CBC posted this video from You Tube of actor Edward Zo claiming he was told not even to bother auditioning for Death Note because he’s Asian American.


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  1. RE: New whitewashing controversy takes off over Death Note: In addition to protesting Asian American groups need to form their own production companies to produce Movies with AA content and actors. To expect other people to do the right thing just due to the goodness of their hearts is not reality.


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