Good art is going to be anesthetized by all the hand-wringing. Good for Disney for figuring out some appropriate casting. That’s a smart move. It is odd to me that everyone expects Hollywood to appropriately cater to a worldwide market and offend as few people as possible. I’m curious if people who are born, raised, and live in Syria, Pakistan, Iran, or another country from that region are offended by the 1992 Aladdin.
No art is perfect, but it seems as though there is an expectation of perfection. I think the people making movies should do a few basic things and leave the rest to the wind: tell a good story, execute it well, try not to piss too many people off, and worry a little less about everything else.
The South Park dudes made a wildly successful Broadway play gleefully mocking Mormons, who are an easy target and who also won’t get up in arms about it. Mormons don’t have national media power and they don’t really care that much about mockery. What happened if the South Park dudes made a Broadway play skewering… feminism? Socialists? Sensitive college students? Any other in-group with media these days?
It all seems stupid and hypocritical to me. Was Aladdin (1992) good? Yeah, I think so. Would it have been better as art if it had been made by people who resembled those it portrayed? Yeah, it might have been more accurate, but children’s stories are often pretty damned inaccurate. Aladdin (1992) is not bad because it was made by white people. Aladdin (201?) will not be bad because of the race of the people making it, but it is good that it has actors that match the ethnicity of the characters. Full representation of various races and ethnicities throughout the production crew of Aladdin (201?) will not make the move better simply through representation. The ultimate goal of the people making this film should be to make a good film, not to please everyone sweating over the race of who runs the camera or who wrote the script or who does whatever else. How exhausting. I feel like you have to pass a test to enjoy anything anymore.