James Cameron’s Avatar: The Way of Water came under sharp criticism from Native Americans, who called a boycott of the most expensive film due to its racist Naʼvi portrayal, as per WaPo.
Do NOT watch Avatar: The Way of Water
Join Natives & other Indigenous groups around the world in boycotting this horrible & racist film. Our cultures were appropriated in a harmful manner to satisfy some 🏳 man’s savior complex.
No more Blueface!
Lakota people are powerful! pic.twitter.com/NmHVU565u3
— 🌽Asdzáá Tłʼéé honaaʼéí🌽(She/Her)🌽 (@asdza_tlehonaei) December 18, 2022
The long-delayed Avatar sequel, which grossed nearly half a billion worldwide, faced boycott campaigns, “Join Natives & other Indigenous groups around the world in boycotting this horrible & racist film.
Our cultures were appropriated in a harmful manner to satisfy some [white flag emoji] man’s savior complex,” Yuè Begay, a Navajo artist and co-chair of Indigenous Pride Los Angeles, said.
Previously, James Cameron fell on the wrong side of the aisle with The Native Americans for offensive comments, who started the movement to boycott 2009’s Avatar.
But renewed calls to boycott the film came after the Oscar winner’s those old comments resurfaced about the Sioux nation in 2010, including the Lakota people, which the campaign calls “anti-indigenous rhetoric.”
Natives been telling ya’ll James Cameron’s Avatar is racist and creepy as hell. The way he talks about the Lakota in this article is absolutely horrible.https://t.co/qnDWEtrP81
— Johnnie Jae aka The Burnt Ball of Fury (@johnniejae) December 16, 2022
Cameron’s disrespectful comments drew a strong reaction from Native Americans, “James Cameron apparently made Avatar inspire all my dead ancestors to ‘fight harder,'” wrote Johanna Brewer, a computer science professor at Smith College. “Eff right off with that savior complex, bud.”
“I won’t be seeing the new one,” Chapman wrote. “It does nothing for Native Americans but suck oxygen for itself at our expense.”
The boycott campaign also focused on Cameron’s casting white actors to play the Na’vi people.
Moreover, the campaign called for such creative decisions of James Cameron’s Avatar’s “blueface,” in the tradition of the racist performance practices of “redface, blackface, yellowface.
Previously, James Cameron also mentioned, “The Native Americans are the Na’vi.”[via]