Star Wars Tells Fans "Don’t Choose To Be A Racist"
Disney expanded its Star Wars universe last week and began to tell a missing chapter in its story by dropping the first two parts of its Obi-Wan Kenobi limited series. Ewan McGregor returns to the galaxy far, far away with a few other familiar faces, as well as some brand new ones such as Reva. However, it appears Reva, who is played by actress Moses Ingram, hasn't received quite as warm a welcome to the wide world of Star Wars as she deserves.
Shortly after the new episodes dropped, Ingram received messages from people claiming to be Star Wars fans labeling her unworthy of the Reva role based on nothing more than her ethnicity. In screenshots shared via Ingram's Instagram story, one message reads, “you're a diversity hire and you won't be loved or remembered for this acting role,” while another appears to threaten the Star Wars star, telling Ingram her “days are numbered”.
Thankfully, what appears to be the vast majority of Star Wars fans have been rallying behind Ingram since she shared the messages, including the official Star Wars Twitter account. “If anyone intends to make her feel in any way unwelcome, we have only one thing to say: we resist,” a tweet from the Star Wars account reads. “There are more than 20 million sentient species in the Star Wars galaxy, don’t choose to be a racist.”
There is history here when it comes to actors cast in major Star Wars roles and people claiming they were only hired based on the color of their skin. John Boyega, who played Finn in episodes seven through nine, spoke out about the messages and death threats he received for being a black man cast in the role of a stormtrooper. There was also a big backlash when Kelly Marie Tran played the role of Rose Tico in The Last Jedi, something that may have had an impact on the amount of screentime she had in The Rise of Skywalker.
Disney and those in charge of the Star Wars series did very little in the way of defending Boyega and Tran at the time. Particularly in Boyega's case, the online hate he received for playing Finn was largely unknown until he spoke about it himself after the final trilogy had come to an end. Hopefully, the supoortive tweets sent out through the official Star Wars account so soon after Ingram shared some of the hate she received following Obi-Wan's debut are a sign that Star Wars is committed to doing more for its stars of colour.
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