After the enormous success of Mortal KombatLiu Kang actor Ludi Lin is calling on other major franchises to commit to more Asian representation. Recently, Amazon’s Jennifer Salke explained to The Hollywood Reporter why the budget is for the upcoming Lord of the Rings series was so high (a reported budget of $ 465 million to be exact). She said the show was committed to “massive world building,” so the budget had to be expanded.
Shortly after, Ludi Lin responded to the interview on Twitter by saying, “It’s going to be hard to justify building a” huge world “without characters that look Asian. Put that proposal on us @JSalke. It’s not hard, we’re here. “
The Middle Earth franchise certainly has a history of limited diversity. Both Lord of the Rings and Hobbit trilogies were almost exclusively full of white actors, and while the upcoming Amazon series has cast more people of color, Ludi Lin points out that Asian representation is still disappointing. Lin’s point is that it would make sense for more Asian-looking people to appear in a “huge” fantasy world. The Lord of the Rings prequel series would be a good project to make that happen as it probably won’t interact with most of the established characters from the two trilogies. It has been confirmed to take place centuries before the events of The Hobbit, so it’s giving way to a whole new cast of characters.
Lin makes a compelling argument, especially given the history behind the previous one Mortal Kombat modifications. The first Mortal Kombat film famously cast several white actors in Asian roles. For example, the Japanese character Scorpion was played by American-born Chris Cassamassa, and the Chinese character Sub-Zero was played by French-born actor Francois Petit. The most prominent example was the role of Lord Raiden, who was portrayed in the film by actor Christopher Lambert. The last Mortal Kombat However, adaptation remained true to each character’s nationalities with its casting. The film became a big streaming hit on HBO Max and also performed quite well at the box office despite COVID-19 restrictions.
The diversity debate in major franchises has been long and arduous, and it is still as complicated as ever. Many production companies are increasingly committed to representation, but according to Lin there is still work to be done. His argument is simply that a fake fantasy world like Middle Earth should have more Asian actors. Lord of the Rings is undoubtedly one of the famous and beloved franchises of all time, and the Asian representation in that world is said to be enormous. There hasn’t been a response from Jennifer Salke or Amazon to Lin’s criticism yet, so maybe more to come.
Mortal Kombat stars Lewis Tan as Cole Young, Jessica McNamee as Sonya Blade, Josh Lawson as Kano, Joe Taslim as Sub-Zero, Mehcad Brooks as Jax, Matilda Kimber as Emily, Laura Brent as Allison, Tadanobu Asano as Lord Raiden, Hiroyuki Sanada as Scorpion , Chin Han as Shang Tsung, Ludi Lin as Liu Kang, Max Huang as Kung Lao, Sisi Stringer as Mileena, Mel Jarnson as Nitara, and Nathan Jones as Reiko. Mortal Kombat currently plays in theaters and streams on HBO Max.
Topics: Lord of the Rings TV Show, Amazon Prime, Mortal Kombat