There has been a lot of controversy surrounding the Netflix’s adaptation of the Japanese anime Death Note. The idea of whitewashing has become a much larger talking point than it was several years ago and the idea of representation is important. It’s not an easy discussion to have and sometimes directors make it a little harder. Sometimes they admit they were wrong the way Scott Derrickson did after the controversy Doctor Strange caused. Then there are people like Death Note director Adam Wingard. Instead of acknowledging that this is a very real issue he instead took the defensive stance of basically telling anyone who even brought it up that they were wrong. He isn’t out right saying he was right but he’s also refusing to acknowledge why this is an issue.
Wingard does have some support from fellow filmmakers who also seem to be missing the point.
Was there this much public outcry when THE RING remake was similarly set in Seattle back in 2002?
— Ted Geoghegan (@tedgeoghegan) June 7, 2017
When did remaking a foreign film in the US become something offensive? Happens ALL THE TIME (The Ring, Insomnia, Let Me in, True Lies etc)
— Leigh Whannell (@LWhannell) June 7, 2017
The internet is not the same place it was ten years ago with movies like The Ring were made. The culture has changed and people have become much more aware of things like whitewashing and the lack of proper representation in the media. These are very real issues that have a much bigger spotlight on them now. To think that nothing has changed culturally in ten years completely misses the point. This is a concern now, this is an issue now, and to disregard it like it’s nothing is disrespectful to everyone involved.
There is a reason women are crying during Wonder Woman. There is a reason people are losing their minds over Black Panther. If you can’t see that, if you aren’t even willing to acknowledge it, then you’re not going to make it in this business.
Summary: Light Turner, a bright student who stumbles across a mystical notebook that has the power to kill any person whose name he writes in it. Light decides to launch a secret crusade to rid the streets of criminals. Soon, the student-turned-vigilante finds himself pursued by a famous detective known only by the alias L.
Death Note, directed by Adam Wingard, stars Nat Wolff, Lakeith Stanfield, Willem Dafoe, Margaret Qualley, and Shea Whigham. It will stream to Netflix on August 25, 2017.