Matt Damon defended his decision to play in the Asian-centered movie “The Great Wall” in a recent interview with The Associated Press.
After critics accused Damon’s casting in the movie’s lead role of “whitewashing,” Damon explained that the term did not apply in this situation because the role was only ever meant to be European in origin.
“The whole idea of whitewashing, I take that very seriously,” Damon told the AP. The term refers to choosing Caucasians for roles that are meant for actors of other ethnicities, such as the casting of Irish-American Chuck Connors in the role of Geronimo in the 1962 movie of the same name.
At a time when Hollywood has been criticized for its lack of diversity, such as the lack of African-American actors at the recent Oscars, it is all too easy to jump on the bandwagon when a movie about Chinese culture features an actor like Damon, but Damon says the criticism is clearly unfounded.
Damon plays an English mercenary in “The Great Wall.” The movie is an adventure fantasy that envisions the Great Wall of China as having been built to keep out monsters.
Damon said that people often fall for headlines designed to be outrageous, but “eventually you stop clicking on some of those more outrageous things because you just realize there is nothing to the story when you get to it,” according to the AP.
“The Great Wall” is a Sino-Hollywood co-production and stars Pedro Pascal, Willem Dafoe and Andy Lau along with Jing Tian, Eddie Peng (“Unbeatable”) and former boy band star Lu Han, in addition to Damon. It debuts in China on Dec. 16 and a month later in the U.S. on Feb. 17.
© 2021 Newsmax. All rights reserved.