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'Aloha' Director Cameron Crowe Apologizes For Controversial Casting of Emma Stone as a Half Asian Character

'Aloha' Director Cameron Crowe Apologizes For Controversial Casting of Emma Stone as a Half Asian Character

Aloha director Cameron Crowe has written an essay responding to the backlash over casting Emma Stone as a part Hawaiian-Chinese character in his new film.

“Thank you so much for all the impassioned comments regarding the casting of the wonderful Emma Stone in the part of Allison Ng. I have heard your words and your disappointment, and I offer you a heart-felt apology to all who felt this was an odd or misguided casting choice,” Cameron wrote in an essay for The UnCool. “As far back as 2007, Captain Allison Ng was written to be a super-proud ¼ Hawaiian who was frustrated that, by all outward appearances, she looked nothing like one. A half-Chinese father was meant to show the surprising mix of cultures often prevalent in Hawaii. Extremely proud of her unlikely heritage, she feels personally compelled to over-explain every chance she gets. The character was based on a real-life, red-headed local who did just that.”

“I am grateful for the dialogue. And from the many voices, loud and small, I have learned something very inspiring. So many of us are hungry for stories with more racial diversity, more truth in representation, and I am anxious to help tell those stories in the future,” Cameron added. “Emma Stone was chief among those who did tireless research, and if any part of her fine characterization has caused consternation and controversy, I am the one to blame.”

Read the entire essay over at The UnCool.

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Photos: Getty
Posted to: Cameron Crowe, Emma Stone

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  • Jay

    I don’t mind her getting the part, if they believed she was the best person for he role. I just don’t like the fact that they didn’t even consider a half-asian actress. If casting was open to asian and half asian actresses and they chose Emma because she tested better or brought the character to life or whatever then that doesn’t bother me so much.

  • PlayNice

    I feel that Crowe doesn’t have to apologize. I’m sure they have picked the best actress for the job. It’s classy of him to apologize though. Some people take things SO seriously.

  • Jay

    Because representation is important and is serious. There are 14.7 million asian americans, how many do you see on your screen?

  • PlayNice

    It’s a movie. This isn’t the first time this has happened and it won’t be the last. Should they have picked an Asian actress? Yeah, they should have. But the way people are freaking out is silly. I’ll say it again, it’s a movie.

  • FerCat

    ‘tested better’
    You mean tested better for it’s target audience.

  • lshelton22

    The character is biracial. God, you’re dumb.

  • FerCat

    Maybe they should’ve added a little albino to the ethnic mix, should help explain things.

    People joked a while back for Emma to play Mulan. Not so much a joke anymore. :)

  • Koi Pond

    My last name is Ng and I wasn’t mad at all. Maybe some people will have less trouble pronouncing my name though it’s totally fine if they don’t. I know three people: one is :1/4 Japanese and the other two 1/8 Chinese. I didn’t know until they showed me pics of their family. One of my favorite athletes is 1/4 Black but only looks Asian. My cousins married Caucasians so some of their kids actually don’t look that Asian. There’s a lot of mixed people in Hawaii too. I get why people are mad, it’s not common to see full blown Asians in Hollywood. Sometimes people are reasonable and other times over sensitive like that Frozen controversy.

  • Dory Phore

    The arrogance of white people.

  • goshdarling

    she obviously wasn’t the best actress since the movie tanked despite her. I’m surprised she even went for this role. She seems to be involved in world issues, but then agrees to do this?? What ‘tireless research’ do you need to play half asian who appears non asian. It’s obvious they just went for her appearance which Crowe even stated.

  • FerCat

    The Captain bit is kind of a red flag too.

  • deusexmachina

    To be honest there is no Half Asian actresses who have the chop to be both charismatic and a much better actresses who can emulate the character that Emma portrayed. Physically I think Kristen Kreuk is a much more believable but she has the personality of a gnat on the screen and she is not as likable as Emma for this role.

  • Jay

    That’s rich, coming from the person that doesn’t seem to be able to read.

  • deusexmachina

    IMHO. The movie was made very well, Emma did the best of what they gave her. Camern Crowe didn’t have to apologize And as a half Asian myself the movie is done LET’S ALL GET OVER IT!!!!

  • FerCat

    Chloe Wang?

  • FerCat

    This is not the film race equality should be fought on.

  • Jay

    Hmm maybe but they could have used this to introduce us to someone new.

  • fromanotherplanet

    I love how you look at the few exceptions of mixed people who don’t look “Asian” to justify this casting. The reality is a majority of mixed people looked just that: MIXED. Why not give a mixed actress a chance then?? How many leading roles are given to mixed actors?? NONE!!! When one role that finally demands a mixed actor is available, it goes to a white woman. The fact that you do not see why this is problematic is troubling.

  • fromanotherplanet

    “To be honest there is no Half Asian actresses who have the chop to be both charismatic and a much better actresses who can emulate the character that Emma portrayed.”

    And you know this because you have auditioned all the half-asian actresses in America huh?? What an idiot.

  • fromanotherplanet

    You are embarrassing.

  • Pon_de

    you do realize it’s way past obvious when people do the “I’m ____ myself and I’m not offended at all” schtick…..the jig has been up for a while!

  • Pon_de

    Or better yet how about casting…..I dunno….actual people of color for a movie set in a location where 75+% of the population is comprised of people of color.

  • Cruizin1960

    Did you not read that the character, as written, looked white? She was 1/4 Hawaiian. When you look at Barrack Obama, what do you see? If you did not know that his mother was white, would you be sure you were looking at someone who was mixed? He is 1/2 white, yet his features are African American and that is how he identifies. I suggest you google actors who are part Asian but do not look it. Are you aware that Darren Criss from Glee is mixed? How about Vanessa Hudgins? Keanu Reeves?

  • FerCat

    Filipino features seems to be very easy to dilute. Hudgens, Criss, Steinfeld, Schneider etc. Their moms are all Filipino. And there’s Nicole Scherzinger, who’s just a quarter white. A couple more generations and it would be indistinguishable.

  • ShannonHDenson
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