Sony Pictures Executives Are Standing By Director Cameron Crowe's Casting Decisions For New Movie Aloha After He Was Criticised For Failing To Hire Asian-pacific Islanders To Appear In The Film, Which Is Set In Hawaii.
Activists at the Media Action Network for Asian Americans (MANAA) blasted Crowe and the film's producers for appearing to "whitewash" the movie's cast - the military-themed romantic comedy stars Bradley Cooper, Emma Stone and Rachel MCAdams.
In a press release issued to the New York Post earlier this week (beg25May15), MANAA representative Guy Aoki stated, "Caucasians only make up 30 per cent of the population (of Hawaii), but from watching this film, you'd think they made up 99 per cent.
"This comes in a long line of films - The Descendants, 50 First Dates, Blue Crush, Pearl Harbor - that uses Hawaii for its exotic backdrop but goes out of its way to exclude the very people who live there. It's an insult to the diverse culture and fabric of Hawaii."
However, a Sony official has now responded to the controversy, insisting Crowe ensured locals were happy with the production on the paradise islands and even cast politician Bumpy Kanahele in a cameo role.
A statement issued to Us Weekly reads: "While some have been quick to judge a movie they haven't seen and a script they haven't read, the film Aloha respectfully showcases the spirit and culture of the Hawaiian people.
"Filmmaker Cameron Crowe spent years researching this project and many months on location in Hawaii, cultivating relationships with leading local voices. He earned the trust of many Hawaiian community leaders, including Dennis 'Bumpy' Kanahele, who plays a key role in the film."
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