Finn Jones Leaves Twitter After Discussing Iron Fist / Whitewashing Controversy

Posted by March 6, 2017 64 Comments

On Sunday, actor Finn Jones engaged in a discussion with Asyiqin Haron about his casting as Danny Rand in the upcoming Marvel’s Iron Fist. The show is being accused of whitewashing, or casting white actors in non-white roles. One of the most classic examples is the casting of Mickey Rooney as Audrey Hepburn’s Japanese landlord in Breakfast at Tiffany’s, another being Lawrence Olivier as Othello. There are many, many more examples including Scarlett Johansson in the upcoming Ghost in the Shell. Though, in the case of Iron Fist, the character in the source material is white, but there had been a vocal presence pushing for an Asian-American to be cast.

Things started when Jones re-tweeted a post by Riz Ahmed with the message: “representation is important. and here’s why.

He was responded to by Haron, creative director for Geeks of Color. The response started with her asking Jones, “are you for real?” Though she didn’t expect him to, he actor responded, pointing out that while the main character stayed true to the source material, the show incorporates and celebrates actors from all different backgrounds. Now I would post the back and forth directly from twitter, but after the discussion was concluded, Jones deleted his twitter account. Haron made screen captures of the discussion and posted those images.

This discussion, like the casting of Tilda Swinton as the Ancient One, is a bit tougher than the more blatant examples like Ghost in the Shell. Where casting Johansson does seem like whitewashing, if you listen to Scott Derrickson’s commentary on Doctor Strange, a lot of though went into the Swinton casting including trying to avoid playing to stereotypes. When it comes to Iron Fist, Marvel chose to stay with the source material and Jones took a roll that could make his career.

What we ended up with is a civil discussion between two people that disagreed on the topic. It didn’t turn into name calling or hate speak. How that ended up with Jones leaving twitter and Haron being harassed for her views is a problem unto itself.

 

Nothing will ever get addressed if we can’t at least talk about it.


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About Dan Wickline

Has quietly been working at Bleeding Cool for over three years. He has written comics for Image, Top Cow, Shadowline, Avatar, IDW, Dynamite, Moonstone, Humanoids and Zenescope. He is the author of the Lucius Fogg series of novels and a published photographer.

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