“Journey to the West”, a popular Chinese folklore, is getting a new television series and netizens are not too happy about it.
It was reported that See-Saw Films, the Oscar-winning production company behind “The King’s Speech”, started filming the reboot, titled “The Legend of Monkey”, in Auckland, New Zealand last week. The series is set to launch on ABC Australia, TVNZ, and Netflix in 2018.
Inspired by Ming Dynasty novelist and poet Wu Cheng’en’s “Journey to the West”, the upcoming 10-episode drama series stars Chai Hansen as Monkey, Luciane Buchanan as Tripitaka, Josh Thomson as Pigsy, and Emilie Cocquerel as Sandy. According to Variety, the story follows a teenage girl and a trio of fallen gods as they embark on a perilous journey to end a demonic reign of chaos and restore balance to their world.
Although the show has received much hype on social media, the casting news angered many netizens and fans of the story. Some of them even accused the show of whitewashing due to the lack of Chinese actors.
WHAT THE FUCK THIS SHIT WAS MY CHILDHOOD WHY ARE THEY ALL FUCKING WHITE FUCK YOU WHITE PEOPLEhttps://t.co/0pakqBcPZd
— Phillip Teng (@pteng14) April 25, 2017
— Jigme (@JigmeUgen) April 22, 2017
— Louisa Lim (@limlouisa) April 22, 2017
However, it’s worth to note that Hansen is half-Thai while Buchanan and Thomson are of Maori background. The only caucasian in the main cast is Cocquerel. So calling it “whitewashing” may not be entirely accurate.
Next Shark also pointed out that “The Legend of Monkey” will be more of a remake of the hugely popular 1970s Japanese series called “Monkey Magic”, which explains the new look.
Waiting for ppl to splain how The Legend of Monkey is not whitewashing cos it has non-white actors & that none are Chinese is irrelevant
— jennifergearing (@jennifergearing) April 20, 2017
What do you guys think about “The Legend of Monkey”? Do you think it should cast more Chinese actors? Let us know your thoughts in the comments below!