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Asian-American star says she changed her name because “Hollywood is racist”

The burden to “fix” racism does not fall on the very people it marginalizes. But it appears some people have forgotten this, as Asian-American actor Chloe Bennet — who currently plays Daisy Johnson in “Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.” — found herself on the defensive for changing her surname.

Recently, actor Ed Skrein publicly bailed out of his role as Major in “Hellboy,” a character that was originally written as Asian-American in the comic book series the film is based on. Skrein posted his explanation to Instagram on Monday, which Bennet then reposted to praise his decision and outspokenness:

DAMN, that’s a man. Thank you @edskrein for standing up against hollywoods continuous insensitivity and flippant behavior towards the Asian American community. There is no way this decision came lightly on your part, so thank you for your bravery and genuinely impactful step forward. I hope this inspires other actors/film makers to do the same.👏🏼👏🏼👏🏼–Also, dayum cute af AND a pioneer for social injustice?! Fellas, take note. That’s how it’s done.

Bennet, who has of both Chinese and white parents and a diverse family of adopted siblings, has worked professionally in both China and America. Born Chloé Wang, Bennet changed her name for her career as a actor and singer, a fact one Twitter user employed as an opportunity to challenge Bennett’s authority to speak on Asian representation in Hollywood.

The comment has since been deleted, but Bennet’s response was an honest and a revealing lesson about the effects of systematic racism within the entertainment industry.

Bennet said:

Other celebrities used their social media accounts to show support for Bennett and her honest and epic response:

Hopefully, this is not only the last time Bennet’s name change is brought up as a way to discredit her opinions on the Asian-American experience, but will inspire upcoming actors to maintain their Asian names and hiring producers to accept them.

Rachel Leah.

Source: Salon: in-depth news, politics, business, technology & culture > Politics

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