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Thread: Matt Damon on Great Wall whitewashing: 'I didn't take role from Chinese actor'

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    Default Matt Damon on Great Wall whitewashing: 'I didn't take role from Chinese actor'

    Matt Damon on Great Wall whitewashing: 'I didn't take role from Chinese actor'
    Damon blames social media ‘clickbait’ for stoking race row over role in Zhang Yimou fantasy action epic



    Matt Damon promoting The Great Wall in Beijing. Photograph: Andy Wong/AP Andrew Pulver

    Wednesday 7 December 2016 11.01 EST

    Matt Damon has hit back at accusations of that he has participated in “whitewashing” through his involvement in forthcoming historical epic The Great Wall, a large-scale Hollywood-Chinese co-production.

    Speaking to the Associated Press while promoting the film in Beijing, Damon said: “The whole idea of whitewashing, I take that very seriously ... it’s a monster movie and it’s a historical fantasy and I didn’t take a role away from a Chinese actor. It wasn’t altered because of me in any way.”

    Directed by Chinese film-maker Zhang Yimou (who was responsible for the Beijing Olympics opening and closing ceremonies), and the first film to emerge from the Chinese arm of Dark Knight Rises studio Legendary (now owned by Chinese conglomerate Dalian Wanda), The Great Wall is a fantasy action movie set in China’s mythical past, in which a multinational band of mercenaries and fighters battle supernatural monsters. After the trailer release in July, much criticism was directed at the choice of Damon as lead, instead of a Chinese actor.

    Damon said he felt the era of clickbait and fake news was responsible for creating the tone of disproportionate outrage. “It suddenly becomes a story because people click on it, versus the traditional ways that a story would get vetted before it would get to that point ... eventually you stop clicking on some of those more outrageous things because you just realise there is nothing to the story when you get to it.”

    The Great Wall trailer: Matt Damon in the Chinese epic Zhang also told AP that he had added Chinese aspects to the original script, which had been in development for seven years. “Although it was developed for commercial purposes, I felt there was room for me to play and put many elements of Chinese culture into it,” he said.
    The Great Wall is released on 16 December in China and on 17 February in the US and UK.

    source: https://www.theguardian.com/film/201...-chinese-actor

    Matt Damon Dismisses ‘Whitewashing’ Controversy


    AMERICAN VOICES December 8, 2016
    Vol 52 Issue 48 Opinion

    Addressing criticism of his upcoming film Great Wall, in which he plays a savior of China, Matt Damon denied that his portrayal is an instance of Hollywood “whitewashing.” What do you think?




    • “It’s not like the role was written for a Chinese actor and Damon usurped it. The film was designed from the beginning to be culturally tone-deaf.”
      Derek Steffans Circuit Dismantler

    • “I’d be more inclined to give him the benefit of the doubt had I not just seen the latest Bourne installment.”
      Carla Price Informant’s Apprentice


    • “He already told everyone they were wrong. What more do you want?”
      Terrance O’Day Faucet Tightener

    http://www.theonion.com/americanvoic...troversy-54839
    "If you are not outraged, then you are not paying attention," Heather Heyer's facebook quote.

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    Elite Member Waterslide's Avatar
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    • “He already told everyone they were wrong. What more do you want?”
      Terrance O’Day Faucet Tightener
    Haha!

    But I also get a kick out of how The Guardian's main point of reference for describing Zhang Yimou's career is that he's responsible for the opening and closing ceremonies for the Beijing Olympics. Among other things...
    You know, a dozen press agents working overtime can do terrible things to the human spirit. ~Cecil B. DeMille
    Gross, put it away. You could dress beautifully but you gotta be Miss Granny Panty Whore.
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    Elite Member BITTER's Avatar
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    After his snarky comments about Obama, and his unnecessary dressing down the black woman on his Project Greenlight show, I've lost any love I had for Matt. He comes across as preachy and hypocritical to me now.
    Good luck getting a cat to do anything let alone join in on your sexcapades. - Air Quotes

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    Elite Member sputnik's Avatar
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    Matt Damon may be a bit of a dick when it comes to diversity, but this isn't whitewashing and it's important to listen to what the director is saying:

    "Matt Damon is not playing a role that was originally conceived for a Chinese actor. The arrival of his character in our story is an important plot point. There are five major heroes in our story and he is one of them — the other four are all Chinese. The collective struggle and sacrifice of these heroes are the emotional heart of our film. As the director of over 20 Chinese language films and the Beijing Olympics, I have not and will not cast a film in a way that was untrue to my artistic vision. I hope when everyone sees the film and is armed with the facts they will agree."

    given that this is a director who makes Chinese language films that have been wildly successful in the west, I'm gonna give him the benefit of the doubt on this.
    diversity is necessary, but diversity doesn't mean policing how and why writers write stories and cast movies and it shouldn't devolve into a reductive, "stay in your lane" policing or soviet-style quotas that don't even take the script into account. And say what you want about Damon, he is right about click baiting. I read an article on jezebel that, based solely on the poster, concluded this was a classic case of whitewashing and white saviours.
    Last edited by sputnik; December 8th, 2016 at 08:01 PM.
    I'm open to everything. When you start to criticise the times you live in, your time is over. - Karl Lagerfeld

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