I recently wrote a post exploring the history of whitewashing and racebending in Hollywood. In that piece, I concluded by saying:
These racist practices (and more) have existed in Hollywood for far too long. They reinforce a cultural narrative that white lives are the ones the most important. This white bias has long been criticized, but critics are powerless to end the racist practices in the entertainment industry. They cannot prevent the continued use of yellowface, nor can they step in and ensure that roles intended for a Person of Color are played by one. Only the people in control of decisions in Hollywood can do that. The question is, when will these powerful people begin acting responsibly?
In a bit of good news, it looks like someone with the power to act responsibly has chosen to do so. Superherohype has reported that Lana Condor has been cast in the role of Jubilation Lee (aka Jubilee) in the next installment of Fox’s X-Men franchise:
X-Men: Apocalypse director Bryan Singer took to Instagram today to announce another new addition to the film’s cast in the form of newcomer Lana Condor, who will take on the role of Jubilation Lee, AKA Jubilee.
Created by Chris Claremont and Marc Silvestri, the character first appeared in “Uncanny X-Men” #244 and for a time was the youngest member of the core team. The character’s mutation allowed her to create and control energy plasmoids akin to fireworks. She previously appeared in the original three “X-Men” films where she was played by Katrina Florence (X-Men) and by Kea Wong (X2 & X-Men: The Last Stand).
Here is an image of Jubilee:
This is Lana Condor:
They’ve cast an actress of Asian descent to play a character of Asian descent. Good move Hollywood. Now don’t get me wrong-I’m not breaking out the champagne. I know that Hollywood still has a long way to go before it accurately mirrors USAmerican society, but steps like this are essential in getting us to that point.