entertainment

Study finds Asians largely 'invisible' in Hollywood's top films

46 Comments
By Lisa Richwine

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Or does every movie and TV show now have to include at least 4 blacks, 2 Asians, 2 gays, 1 trans and someone in a wheelchair?

Don’t forget the stereotyped inbred racist southern hick who yells “Yee Haaaw” every other line. Gotta keep it real in today’s Hollywood.

Tom Cruise was in The Last Samurai ...... ;-)

Yes but his character was the drunk white man who killed savages and was taught the error of his ways by turning his back on his own highly caricatured people. So in this case Hollywood was able to instruct the masses about the evils of America and the greatness of the samurai and their rebellion against the relatively more egalitarian Meiji era.

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

One of the main reasons I have stopped watching TV.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

So how many westerners are in Japanese movies?

Tom Cruise was in The Last Samurai ...... ;-)

2 ( +3 / -1 )

@happyday

The problem is, Asians and other immigrants prove time and again that America is the land of opportunity.

Dude, come on, take your republican nonsense elsewhere.

Norway is the true land of opportunity for so many reasons, and The oh so great US of A falls short in pretty much every category.

2 ( +3 / -1 )

Yes but 5% of the population of the US is of Asian heritage. Blacks are around 12%. They are under represented and that's a fact.

Westerners in Japan is probably 0.1%, so it's understandable they aren't in movies.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I wonder what the makeup of lead investors of movies are. Normally the leading factor is how much profit will be returned on your investment. If the percentage of movies having an Asian lead investor are small, is it any wonder the projects with Asians as lead are correspondingly small as well? I think the majority of major investors are European, American, Jewish and as such they favor projects with a lead actor or actress that more mirrors themselves, is an established money maker from past projects and is likely to be popular with viewers and fans.

I am not saying this is right but it could be a factor for consideration.

How do you blame a major investor for backing a movie made in America for US audiences with US actors and actresses that are stereo-typically white or black. US history is predominantly white crossing America and settling, fighting with native Indians, Mexicans, British and each other. Add hundreds of years of slavery and you find most stories based on those events will not have Asian leads. As for Sci-Fi, anything can happen and that genre of movies should be all in. It also comes down to the writers. Movies based on books have characters determined by the authors. Change their race at your own risk as doing so puts fans of the book offside in many cases.

There are many factors involved and it is not simply racism.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

We would imagine,...

- @MrKipling 6:02pm:“...seem to be fairly well represented in porn, if that counts?” -

...that genre already provides significant ‘diversity’ in representation of all interests.

Pehaps you would be more interested in yesterday’s JT “Entertainment”:

- “The sex scene in movies isn't disappearing – it's shifting from clichéd fantasy to messy reality” -

You may be disenchanted by the writer’s take and examples of diversity.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I'm a minority of one! hire me!!!!

0 ( +1 / -1 )

May we also ask, @Hiro 5:07pm, is there some need for ‘a code’? (Some way to skirt an algorithm?)

- “Just mainly wondering why there's so many "oMg tHe MovIE iS RuInED cUz tHeRe's a mInORitY oR gAy cHArActeRs" people here.”

Shouldn’t be afraid or ashamed of who we are. However, we are questioning the media’s motives (@10:55am), more and more, everyday.

0 ( +1 / -1 )

Asian women seem to be fairly well represented in porn movies if that counts?

Or so I heard from a friend.....

2 ( +5 / -3 )

@snowymountainhell The study reviewed 1300 films, so yes a few more examples don't move the statistics much. Your examples look to be outside the 2019 cutoff date, and I agree that representation is getting better. Just mainly wondering why there's so many "oMg tHe MovIE iS RuInED cUz tHeRe's a mInORitY oR gAy cHArActeRs" people here

-3 ( +1 / -4 )

Asian-IndigenousNorthAmerican here, as well @Hiro 3:38pm. More examples were cited (@10:55am) and given throughout the day but, perhaps they may have been viewed as ‘contrary’ to the study’s result and the writer’s intent?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Looked at the lead of the study, read the lack of information presented by the study (period of time/ origin of studios) and figured "yup, this alphabet people ammo".... At least we now have API

Personally would have directed this study towards the small screen and streaming services as most actors come up from there. I would agree that the amount of Asian representation was lacking as a child, but it as arguably gotten a lot better since the 1980's.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Its not surprising when you look at the people that ran/run Hollywood, the Weinsteins, Spielburgs, Meyers, Zuckers etc. Its not so much about who is underrepresented, but what group is overrepresented.

-2 ( +1 / -3 )

Japanese-American here. The article simply states that Asians are underrepresented relative to their population, and that a lot of the portrayals that do are negative and dehumanizing. If you can't empathize with Asian-Americans on that front, why the hell do you live in an Asian country!?!?!? It boggles my mind that people can read this and then immediately think they as an (I'm assuming) old white guy are the victims. Last time I checked, white people aren't being beat on the streets here. It's also dumb to point out one actor or movie as a counterexample... it's a drop in Lake Biwa.

Everyone here seems to agree that the J-gov is run by a bunch of dinosaurs, but the JT comments section is also just as whiny and dinosaury.

-1 ( +4 / -5 )

How about Bollywood? I guess inevitably proportionality will prevail.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

That Netflix show, Wu Assassins, is mostly Asian. Lead role is played by Iko Uwais, the Indonesian martial arts star. And Fresh off the boat is all Asian and pretty funny. Why is everyone so sensitive. Birds of a feather flock together. It’s human nature

1 ( +3 / -2 )

Whybdo you have to make everything about the race or color??

Because Hollywood and the media are the ones pushing the race debate on every issue, it.s not about talent, it's all about quotas and sadly, as long as Hollywood and the msm put race front and center on every single issue, we will always be a divided nation and that will worsen as race relations are already at a boiling point and Hollywood isn't helping. This is also a reason why people are just turning off their televisions because people are tired of the rhetoric and division

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

Whybdo you have to make everything about the race or color??

Maybe because Asian actors mostly suck big time? Whomever watched a Korean, Chinese or Japanese drama couldn't just notice that the acting is overblowned all over the place, very exaggerated and unrealistic. Maybe that's the reason.

1 ( +4 / -3 )

Two words for you... Keanu Reeves.

It is so shallow to equate equity and equality. Perhaps there are simply fewer Asian types in the acting profession? You cannot force people to do jobs in lockstep proportion to their presence in the population. Otherwise, I would be clamoring for more white guys in the NBA or NFL.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

The writer and the study’s authors are delusional in their assertions and for the overall financial matter, extremely naive.

China is the current prime-source, and political influencer, of Hollywood’s current motion picture content. We don;t know the average person’s feeling but, the PRC government is totally intolerant of diversity and the LGBTQ+ communities. More over, they deploer efforts at pandering like the main character in Mortal Kombat, the upcoming Shang-chi and Marvel’s “Eternals”.

To wit, China has now ended Chloe Zhao’s films being shown there due to her prior speech against them. She is now persona non grata in her country of birthday.

We don’t like their government’s policies. In turn, they will definitely not tolerate ‘shenanigans and agenda’ from the West.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Invisible? Then it’s obviously because it’s too dark.

3 ( +4 / -1 )

Do we really really think @HappyDay 10:40am, that China, Hollywood’s biggest audience, are interested in films showing the hardships and valiant efforts of Americans of Japanese heritage?

Go for Broke: An Origin Story (2018) Follows a group of University of Hawaii ROTC students during the tumultuous year after the attack on Pearl Harbor, as they navigate wartime Hawaii and fight discrimination. Adaptation of the comic book by Stacey Hayashi

- Kommando 1944 (2018)

- Under the Blood Red Sun (2014) A 13 yr old Japanese boy faces monumental adversity in 1941 Hawaii, while the Japanese bomb Pearl Harbor. Adaptation of the novel by Graham Salisbury

- 99 Years of Love 〜Japanese Americans〜 (2010)

- American Pastime (2007) Focuses on internees' use of baseball as a source of entertainment while living in camp

- Only the Brave (2006)

- The Magic of Ordinary Days (2005)

- Stand Up for Justice: The Ralph Lazo Story (2004)

- Day of Independence (2003) A Nisei teen immerses himself in baseball after his parents decide to return to Japan rather than remain in camp in the U.S.

- Forgotten Valor (2001) Written and directed by Lane Nishikawa, a Nisei veteran remembers his experiences during World War II

- Snow Falling on Cedars (1999) Adaptation of the novel by David Guterson

- Strawberry Fields (1997)

- Come See the Paradise (1990) Follows an interracial family separated by the wartime incarceration program.

- Farewell to Manzanar (1976) Made for television adaptation of Jeanne Wakatsuki Houston's memoirs of her time in the Manzanar internment camp

- If Tomorrow Comes (1971) Made-for-TV movie following the romance between a Nisei man and a white woman at the start of World War II

- Hell to Eternity (1960) Biopic about Guy Gabaldon, a Mexican American Marine who was adopted by a Japanese American family at age 12 and went on to serve in World War II while his adoptive family was interned in Manzanar

- Bad Day at Black Rock (1955)

- Go for Broke! (1951) Based on the real-life story of the 442nd Regimental Combat Team, a segregated army unit of Japanese American men, many of whom served while their families were incarcerated on the home front

Sorry, they’re not.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

Yes, I believe Hollywood should make movies that are more representative of America. There needs to be more ugly, obese characters.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

Really? It’s been tried every 10-15 years. @HappyDay 10:40am: “Sadly, Hollywood is not interested.” -

- The Japanese-American Nisei soldiers are a prime example. They, along with their families, were locked up in internment camps during World War II. They signed up to fight and became part of the most decorated military units in U.S. history. A big piece in the foundation of America.”

That’s all true.

- “This should be blockbuster Hollywood material.”-

Unfortunately, for ‘accountants and financers controlling ‘what’s produced and what’s not’ based on overall box-office receipts more than sympathetic audience responses, these topics were not “blockbuster Hollywood material.”

Plus, do you really think China will continue to finance films showing the hardships and valiant efforts of Americans of Japanese heritage?

3 ( +5 / -2 )

Silencing, erasing, editing and ‘vanishing’ some voices in opposition to a writer’s viewpoint is another form of their so-called “epidemic of invisibility” mentioned above. Those in media should use this opportunity to ‘look in the mirror’ as some actions are now convincing ‘the mainstream’ about this one salient point of the study’s observations:

- “Mass media is one factor that can contribute to aggression towards this community,...When portrayals erase, dehumanize, or otherwise demean any community, ...the trends we observe will continue."

For example, @foreignbrotherhoodarmy 7:30am

- “Wow that must have been some study. My studies show that people need something to be outraged about no matter how asinine or ridiculous.” -

and, @Wobot 9:39 am

- “Go woke, go broke. They'll try and make something forced to please the critics, nobody will go and they'll scream about some isms while another film that was made to be good regardless of who's in it will make megabucks. -

As we posted yesterday,

- “Starting to think ‘differently’ about the who, what and why there’s such animosity toward the deluge of LGBTQ+ in media and entertainment.”

It’s strongly felt by many that it’s the media themselves who are perpetuating the possible misunderstanding of minorities like the API.

-5 ( +0 / -5 )

You don't need a study to figure out that Asians are marginalized. And it is not surprising.

Hollywood is full of white, liberal elites who are birds of the same feather as academia, media, big tech, and Democrats. They have always tried to cast themselves as being liberal and open-minded. However, they cater to the notion that America is evil.

The problem is, Asians and other immigrants prove time and again that America is the land of opportunity. Most Whites in America love and respect Asians because they sacrifice, work hard, and lift communities up.

The Japanese-American Nisei soldiers are a prime example. They, along with their families, were locked up in internment camps during World War II. However, determined to show their loyalty, they signed up to fight for America and became part of the most decorated military units in U.S. history. A big piece in the foundation of America.

This should be blockbuster Hollywood material. Sadly, Hollywood is not interested.

0 ( +5 / -5 )

Yesterday, an Asian-American coach and former NFL player Eugene Chung talked about what a team told him when he went to interview for a head coaching job recently. They told him that they couldn't hire him because because he wasn't a minority. He said when looked in the mirror that he was a "minority." They said he wasn't the minority that they were looking for. Hollywood probably has the same line of thinking.

5 ( +8 / -3 )

Go woke, go broke

They'll try and make something forced to please the critics, nobody will go and they'll scream about some isms while another film that was made to be good regardless of who's in it will make megabucks.

That's why these people hate anime, because it's taking over from Hollywood but isn't politically correct. On the flip side check out what Japanese fans thought of Ghost In The Shell with Scarlett Johansson compared to the Americans...

4 ( +9 / -5 )

If it's an Asian character, sure. Like that disaster of a movie, Dragonball, should never have been made, but at least they could have used an Asian actor for the lead!

3 ( +4 / -1 )

My idea of diversity is not putting Asians in Hollywood films.

It is people watching films, like Parasite, or Crouching Dragon, or Dragon Slayer, that aren't from Hollywood.

11 ( +11 / -0 )

At least Asian actors are used for roles calling for Asians. I recall the good old days in Hollywood, when Honolulu detective Charlie Chan was played by a Swede (Warner Oland) and Mr. Moto was played by Peter Lorre (a Hungarian Jew). And John Wayne (rolls eyes) played Genghis Khan in "The Conquerer."

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Leading roles on the bridge of the starship Enterprise (original Star Trek series), by ethnic representation:

Kirk, Bones, Scotty, Chekov (Caucasian, 57%)

Uhura (Black, 14.3%)

Sulu (Asian, 14.3%)

Spock (Vulcan, 14.3%)

Man, that show was way ahead of its time. Groovy, baby!

6 ( +9 / -3 )

Wasn’t Godzilla vs. Kong just released with 2 major Asian & Pacific Islander (API) characters headlining?

7 ( +9 / -2 )

Wasn’t Mortal Kombat just released with 2-3 Asian leads?

5 ( +7 / -2 )

”Barrel scraping” then, more banging on an old “war drum”. This is a rehash of what was being said in 2015.

https://deadline.com/2015/08/study-reveals-epidemic-of-invisibilty-in-movie-casting-usc-annenberg-center-1201492361/ -

*- “I don’t think we’re seeing a great deal of change. I call it ‘an epidemic of invisibility.’ In the top 100 films of 2014, there were over 40 with no Asians. Not one film featured a transgender character. When over 40 films [out of 100] have no Asian characters,” Smith said, “we have a problem.” *

Professor Stacy L. Smith - “Film bears little resemblance to our nation’s demography,”

Aren’t we growing tired of the intersectional politics, crossing issues to promote one’s own agenda?

7 ( +9 / -2 )

How can there be an “epidemic “ of invisibility when there is only a fraction currently being produced during the ongoing ‘real’ invisible epidemic?

It’s “slim pickings” for everybody in “Entertainment” now.

2 ( +4 / -2 )

The US movie 'Crazy Rich Asians' had a 100% asian cast and was praised for it's diversity, let that sink in for a minute.

of course. “diversity” = code word for anti-white/less whites

5 ( +10 / -5 )

The US movie 'Crazy Rich Asians' had a 100% asian cast and was praised for it's diversity, let that sink in for a minute.

15 ( +16 / -1 )

I have been in Japan for 20 years. I have seen a Westerner in a Japanese movie two times. And the Westerners are always made to look foolish and incapable of thought.

16 ( +19 / -3 )

They definitely have a lot more blacks in leading roles compared to Asians.

I'd like to see a little more reality and some movies should have an all-white cast or an all Asian one. The reality is many friends are of the same race and hang out with each other. Some areas or shops do have almost all Hispanics in them.

This formula of having every group of leading stars being multi-cultural is lame.

13 ( +15 / -2 )

The whole world takes movies etc. made by whites in a majority white country for granted as “world’s entertainment”.

Can’t whites have their own movies, musics, awards, schools, culture without someone barking about how “inequal” they are by not having other foreign ethnicities blended in?

Next they will point out the inequality of european statues and paintings from the middle ages with no blacks/asians at all.

10 ( +13 / -3 )

So how many westerners are in Japanese movies?

25 ( +29 / -4 )

Wow that must have been some study. My studies show that people need something to be outraged about no matter how asinine or ridiculous

14 ( +17 / -3 )

I'm sure they would have a different result if they did the same research in China.

Or does every movie and TV show now have to include at least 4 blacks, 2 Asians, 2 gays, 1 trans and someone in a wheelchair?

21 ( +29 / -8 )

Oh geeze...here we go!

15 ( +21 / -6 )

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