JK Rowling Fires Back Over ‘Racially Insensitive’ Casting
JK Rowling has found herself at the centre of a race controversy following the release of the latest Fantastic Beasts trailer.
Whilst many were left suitably blown away by the clip, others have picked up on a detail that hasn’t sat too well.
The trailer confirmed a long-held theory that Avengers‘ favourite, Claudia Kim will be appearing in the film as Nagini.
Though the news that an Asian actress will be taking on the role of a slave / snake / Horcrux has left many questioning Rowling’s choice of casting.
So Nagini is a Korean woman with an Indian name who lived in Albania later turned into a horcrux? What’s next? She might as well be Harry’s mother (Voldemort’s his father) and Harry is actually not just a parseltongue but half-human half-snake. pic.twitter.com/vjUvWU1wOu
— Joseph 슬기로운솔로몬 (@seulgisolomon) September 25, 2018
The film had already been criticised for its lack of diversity and the addition of Kim has only added fuel to the situation.
@jk_rowling listen Joanne, we get it, you didn’t include enough representation when you wrote the books. But suddenly making Nagini into a Korean woman is garbage.
Representation as an afterthought for more woke points is not good representation. https://t.co/UIrR7yiKQD
— Jen Moulton (@J_A_Moulton) September 26, 2018
Rowling has hit back at her critics though, insisting that the casting of Kim as Nagini wasn’t just racial tokening.
The Naga are snake-like mythical creatures of Indonesian mythology, hence the name ‘Nagini.’ They are sometimes depicted as winged, sometimes as half-human, half-snake. Indonesia comprises a few hundred ethnic groups, including Javanese, Chinese and Betawi. Have a lovely day 🐍
— J.K. Rowling (@jk_rowling) September 26, 2018
Rowling has faced numerous controversies in terms of casting for the upcoming movie.
The casting of Johnny Depp, who had been accused of domestic abuse by his ex-wife, Amber Heard, caused outrage amongst fans.
The author has also be praised for championing diversity though, she earned plaudits after showing her support for the casting of black actress, Noma Dumezweni, as Hermione in the Harry Potter and the Cursed Child play.