USA Today: Constance Wu on Hollywood’s white savior problem: “Our heroes don’t look like Matt Damon”


USA Today (by Jaleesa M. Jones):

Constance Wu has had it with Hollywood’s white savior complex.

The Fresh Off the Boat actress and two-time Television Critics Association Awards nominee posted a pointed letter to Twitter Friday, in which she criticized the whitewashing of Chinese history with the casting of Matt Damon in 2017’s action epic The Great Wall and called for Hollywood to change the narrative.

We have to stop perpetuating the racist myth that only a white man can save the world,” Wu wrote one day after the trailer debut for The Great Wall, which features Damon as its dragon-slaying lead. “It’s not based in actual fact. Our heroes don’t look like Matt Damon. They look like Malala. (Gandhi). Mandela. Your big sister when she stood up for you to those bullies that one time.”

Wu went on to challenge the argument that it’s hard to finance and profit from movies that aren’t toplined by white talent, and urged studios to consider the message tacitly communicated by scores of films that revolve around white heroes and struggling communities of color.

Money is the lamest excuse in the history of being human,” she wrote. “So is blaming the Chinese investors. (POC’s choices can based on unconscious bias too.) Remember it’s not about blaming individuals, which will only lead to soothing their lame ‘b-but I had good intentions! but…money!’ microaggressive excuses. Rather, it’s about pointing out the repeatedly implied racist notion that white people are superior to POC and that POC need salvation from our own color via white strength. When you consistently make movies like this, you ARE saying that.”

Wu also questioned why projects starring entertainers of color aren’t given the benefit of the doubt — or the latitude to fail — that is afforded to projects starring white actors.

If white actors are forgiven for having a box office failure once in a while, why can’t a POC sometimes have one? And how COOL would it be if you were the movie that took the ‘risk’ to make a POC as your hero, and you sold the (expletive) out of it?! The whole community would be celebrating! If nothing else, you’d get some mad respect (which is WAY more valuable than money) so MAKE that choice.”

The actress punctuated the call to action by invoking the importance of representation, particularly for children whose dreams may expand or contract based on the images they see, which are still decidedly limited according to Hollywood’s announced 2016 slates.

If you know a kid, you should care too,” Wu argued. “Because we WERE those kids. Why do you think it was so nice to see a nerdy white kid have a girl fall in love with him? Because you WERE that nerdy white kid who felt unloved. And seeing pictures of it in Hollywood’s stories made it feel possible. That’s why it moved you, that’s why it was a great story. Hollywood is supposed to be about making great stories. So make them.”

Giant 7-foot tall Chinese Boxer puts American opponent to sleep with first round punch

They call Taishan DongThe Great Wall”. At seven feet tall, he is an absolute monster and surely a fearsome sight in the ring for any other heavyweight boxer. Just last Friday, American Lance Gauch found out the hard way what it is like to be on the receiving end of the menacing fist of the giant Chinaman. Dong moved his professional record to 5-0 with the win – a win that the American will probably not remember too much about.

To be fair to Gauch, it appeared a mismatch all along, giving up more than 30 centimetres, or 12 inches, in height difference. Gauch did his best to avoid carnage from the big guy’s fists for most of the first round, but what was perhaps inevitable came thirty seconds before the bell to end the opening round was due.

Reports said that the referee of the fight, Ray Corona, didn’t bother with a count, and called the fight off immediately. Interestingly, some reports suggested that Gauch, whose record stands at 5-9-2, was actually winning the round up to the point of the almighty punch.

There was some concern following the knockout as it appears that Gauch was in some serious trouble. It was not only a knockout in boxing terms, but a literal knockout which saw the American lay prone on the floor for about ten minutes before being taken to by a stretcher to hospital.

It was a scary but awesome display of the damage “The Great Wall of China” is capable of. At 130kg, or 286 pounds, Dong is a monster from the Gansu province. However, he has relocated to the United States to further his boxing career, and has become a part of Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions since giving them his signature last year. Although playing a strategic game with who Dong is pitted against, Golden Boy believes him to be a legitimate heavyweight contender.

Mr De La Hoya wanted to open the Chinese market because he believes in me,” Dong told Fox Sports earlier this year. “He knows I can become a champ”.

Dong is often compared to his countryman, Yao Ming – often referred to as the Yao Ming of boxing. Both men are huge. With his professional record now at 5-0, Dong’s first two bouts were both knockout followed by another two which went the distance. During the latest short fight, his opponent Gauch did look incredibly underprepared to meet someone like Dong.

Perhaps predictably due to his height, Dong is said to have initially entertained ideas of becoming a basketballer, before attempting kickboxing, to eventually settle on boxing. Those in the know say he has considerable hand speed and athleticism for a man of his size, although nobody got the chance to witness much of that during the latest fight.

Nowadays I am more patient and can overcome any challenges that arise during the fight. I will give the best of myself. I will try to understand my opponent’s strategy from the beginning and therefore defeat him,” he said in an interview with Fox Sports. “My maximum potential has not been revealed yet. That is why I train hard, in order to become a world champion”.

Giant Chinese Boxer Puts American Opponent To Sleep With First Round Punch