Go Asians: A History of AAPI Representation in ‘Star Wars’

The month of May holds a special place in the hearts of Asian American and Pacific Islander Star Wars fans. For starters, May has been AAPI Heritage Month since 1990, though it originally began as “Asian Pacific Heritage Week” when it was proposed in Congress by Representatives Frank Horton and Norman Y. Mineta in 1977. That’s right, 1977. You know what else debuted in May 1977?

Continue reading “Go Asians: A History of AAPI Representation in ‘Star Wars’”

Which AAPI Actor Deserves the Nerd Grand Slam?

This week’s reveals from Doctor Strange and Ghost in the Shell are further proof that it’s hard out there for an Asian actor who wants to be in a genre film. Fortunately, there are a few AAPI actors who have claim to the coveted “Nerd Grand Slam;” that is, they’ve starred in a superhero franchise, a Star (Trek or Wars) vehicle, and an epic fantasy. But who is the nerdiest? Dominic Mah, from YOMYOMF.com, joins Keith to decide which actor is the One Nerd to rule them all.

Continue reading “Which AAPI Actor Deserves the Nerd Grand Slam?”

Steven Yeun to Star in Animated Chew Feature

Originally posted at Reappropriate | (H/T Angry Asian Man)

After much effort to create a live-action version of Chew — understandably hampered by the story’s routine use of cannibalism as a central plot device — producers have decided to go in a different direction and create an animated feature instead (that is expected to go straight to home release). This, I think, is a good decision: the book has a very specific tone and atypical humour that I think would not translate very well through a live-action script.

And, in what is a near-perfect casting choice, producers have tapped Steven Yeun, best-known for his incredible portrayal of The Walking Dead‘s Glenn Rhee, to voice the main character of Tony Chu.

Continue reading “Steven Yeun to Star in Animated Chew Feature”

Live-Action Akira: An All-Asian American Dream Cast

With all the debate this week over cross-racial and trans-racial casting of comic book movies, one aspect that hasn’t really been discussed in depth yet is the phenomenon of Hollywood White-washing of explicitly non-White characters in live-action adaptations. Famously, Aang of The Last Airbender was played in the live-action adaptation (directed by M. Night Shyamalan) by a young White actor despite repeated references in the comics to Aang’s non-White racial makeup. More recently, a non-comic book (but nonetheless grindhouse-esque cult classic) Korean movie called Oldboy is being remade in Hollywood with an all-White cast.

With the existing dearth of non-White faces in film, let alone comic book film, it’s safe to say that most of us can agree that cross-racially casting a non-White character with White actors is problematic.

A few years back, Hollywood was also rumoured to be developing a live-action adaptation of the landmark anime, Akira. At one point, the film was going to star Zac Efron, and although he has since backed out, it’s still unlikely that today’s Hollywood will cast Asian actors to play Akira‘s all-Japanese cast of characters.

And why not? Hollywood typically argues that there aren’t enough (or talented) non-White talent in Hollywood.

Well, that argument sounds like complete trash to me.

After the jump, check out a re-post of something I wrote in 2010, containing my own all Asian/Asian-American casting of a hypothetical Akira live-action movie.

Continue reading “Live-Action Akira: An All-Asian American Dream Cast”