There has been plenty of controversy surrounding Matt Damon’s leading role in “The Great Wall”, a Chinese-inspired movie.
Critics were upset with the decision to cast a white-actor in a Chinese role, but Damon believes the backlash came too soon: “It was a f**king bummer… I had a few reactions. I was surprised, I guess, because it was based on a teaser, it wasn’t even a full trailer, let alone a movie,” he said at New York City Comic Con.
After the first teaser was released, “Fresh Off the Boat” star Constance Wu wrote: “We have to stop perpetuating the racist myth that [only a] white man can save the world… Our heroes don’t look like Matt Damon.”
To which the film’s Chinese director, Zhang Yimou, told Entertainment Weekly: “Our film is not about the construction of the Great Wall. Matt Damon is not playing a role that was originally conceived for a Chinese actor. The arrival of his character in our story is an important plot point. There are five major heroes in our story and he is one of them — the other four are all Chinese.”
He echoed those thoughts on Saturday, adding: “If people see this movie and there is somehow whitewashing involved in a creature feature that we made up then I will listen to that with my whole heart.”
“The Great Wall” climbs into theatres on February 17, 2017.