Disney Admits to Browning Up White Extras on the 'Aladdin' Set
There are some issues on the Aladdin set
The live-action version of Aladdin is scheduled to be released in 2019; the movie has already been riddled with scandal.
Earlier this week, it was revealed that Disney has been artificially browning up white extras for the movie.
The news came out when film extra Kaushal Odedra said that he saw “around 20” extras being made to look Middle Eastern, in an interview with the U.K.’s Sunday Times. Odedra would go on to be quoted by the BBC, saying:
“Aladdin was the perfect time to show diversity but also be accurate…they’re being out of touch with what’s going on around them.”
BBC spoke to representatives from Disney who confirmed that they were browning up some of their extras:
“Great care was taken to put together one of the largest, most diverse casts ever seen on screen…Diversity of our cast and background performers was a requirement and only in a handful of instances when it was a matter of specialty skills, safety and control (special effects rigs, stunt performers and handling of animals) were crew made up to blend in.”
Director of the movie, Guy Ritchie, has not responded to the controversy.
Actor Kal Penn, who is Indian, responded to Disney’s statement on Twitter:
I love @Disney so much. But when a PR person says they decided to put 100 people in Brownface in 2018 because not enough of us are qualified, that’s bs, someone just didn’t want to spend the $ to do it right. Let’s all expect more & do better this year.https://t.co/MzZJp6jvPB
— Kal Penn (@kalpenn) January 7, 2018
This isn’t the first time Disney and Aladdin has had white-washing issues. In July, Disney was criticized for casting Naomi Scott as Princess Jasmine.