Media Consumers for Entertainment Equality


The Last Airbender (2010)

From March 2009 to July 2010, Racebending.com coordinated the protest against The Last Airbender (2010), a film that discriminated against actors of color and reinforced glass ceilings by casting white actors to play Asian and Inuit characters.

We mobilized fans of the original animated series–and members of the greater community–to write letters to the production and alert journalists and film critics to the situation. As a result, at least 25 film critics from the United States, United Kingdom, and Australia mentioned the controversy in their reviews, including Roger Ebert.

Between April 2010 and July 2010, Racebending.com exchanged correspondence with Paramount Pictures President Adam Goodman to discuss public concerns about the film. Racebending.com also organized a live protest of the movie with Asian American community organizations, including the Korean Resource Center and the Media Action Network for Asian Americans. Over 100 people protested the movie in front of a Hollywood movie theatre on July 1st, 2010.

The protest movement and casting controversy were covered by over 75 newspapers and media outlets, including the Associated Press, CNN, Los Angeles Times, Fox 11 News, National Public Radio, Boston Globe, and San Francisco Chronicle, as well as international press including BBC, CBC Canada, Daily Telegraph and in Chinese language press.

Recommended Reading

Archive of Articles on “The Last Airbender”

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