Editorial: Movies, T.V. should better reflect multiculturalism

Despite the ever-increasing multicultural nature of our world, it is yet to be accurately reflected in the media we consume.

Hollywood and various content creators have come under scrutiny in recent years for lacking representation and for white-washing pieces that belong to other cultures.

While adaptations of movies and shows facilitate the exchange of cultures and culture sharing, it’s important not to lose the nuances of the culture in the process.

Recently, Netflix’s adaptation of the Japanese manga Death Note came under fire for white-washing and failing to have a cast that accurately represents the original characters. Similarly, a live-action remake of Aladdin was also criticized when actress Naomi Scott was officially cast as Princess Jasmine, as she did not accurately represent Princess Jasmine racially.

Having a cast in the adapted version that does not reflect the original cast strips away the cultural essence of the piece. At the same time, casting white actors in roles originally meant for people of colour silences the experiences of these groups, who are often reduced to background roles.

The preservation of culture and its richness also depends on the accurate representation of it in the media, and translation of language should not be equated with erasure of culture.

When adapting a movie, show, book, or any work pertaining to a certain culture, it’s important to create a faithful adaptation to preserve the cultural richness and value of the piece.