The Paramount network recently came under fire for casting Kelsey Asbille to play the wife of the character Cory on its new TV show “Yellowstone”.
Kelsey is a member of the Asian American community.
The 25-year-old “Teen Wolf” actress previously went by the last name Chow.
The actress, cast to play a Native American woman living on the reservation with her husband, is actually a mix of caucasian and Taiwanese. Recently it became known that she may be part of a band of Cherokee descent far back in her lineage, but that was not a deciding factor in the casting process.
After the casting was announced Native American actor Adam Beach clapped back across his social media channels expressing his outrage at the lack of diversity and white washing done by Hollywood.
He urged fellow Natives to boycott the project.
“I'm asking my Native Actors to stay away from this project.”Yellowstone” is telling the world that there are no Native Actresses capable of leading a TV show. Unless your great-great-great grandparents are Cherokee.”
While some may think the issue is a small one it's, unfortunately, a piece of a bigger picture. Racial diversity in media and literature is a huge issue, often leaving Native American's as the “forgotten people”. Most major projects portray us in an inaccurate, often harsh light.
And Now they couldn't even get an authentic Native actress to accurately portray us?
What happens when a little Native girl watching the show wonders why she doesn't look like her? Or thinks there's something wrong with her because that's what a “real Native” is supposed to look like?
The situation over all is disrespectful and shows the casting team doesn't see a difference between the Asian and Native communities.
What are your thoughts?
Are people over reacting or did the network go a step too far, contributing to cultural appropriation?
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