Why People Are Upset Over Scarlett Johansson’s Latest Role

It looks like Hollywood is still in the "adding to the list" stage of its long history of whitewashing on film. Today, the first still was released for an upcoming adaptation of the beloved Manga series The Ghost in the Shell. The series, written by Masamune Shirow, takes place in a dystopian reimagining of Japan. But the image, like the film, stars a white actress (Scarlett Johansson). And fans of the story seem disappointed but not surprised.
The casting choice has even received criticism from other film and TV stars. Ming-Na Wen, best known for her role on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D and as the voice of Mulan, tweeted out her disappointment, writing, "Nothing against Scarlett Johansson. In fact, I'm a big fan. But everything against this Whitewashing of Asian role."
Wen is far from the only one voicing frustration on Twitter.
Whitewashing Asian roles in film is unfortunately nothing new (see Avatar, or even more recently, Tilda Swinton in Doctor Strange). Hopefully, as fans continue to speak out against these casting choices, their voices will inspire change.

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