Lemon Water

Re: AtLA’s Friky Diky Cast: Replacing Jesse McCartney?!?! And Suki Appears!

I just noticed something on the Wiki page for the Avatar film controversy:

“It was announced in February 2009 that Dev Patel has joined the cast of M. Night Shyamalan’s “The Last Airbender.” He replaced Jesse McCartney, for the role of Zuko, whose tour dates conflicted with a boot camp that is scheduled for the cast. The boot camp is where the actors are scheduled to train for martial arts before filming scheduled for March 2009.”

I looked it up and found this article. I am stunned, and beginning to feel slightly more optimistic. I know Dev Patel starred in Slumdog Millionare, but that is as far as my knowledge extends, especially since I haven’t seen it yet. I heard he did an excellent performance. However, I am thrilled that we won’t have Jesse McCartney acting as Zuko! YES. YES. YES. *punches fist into the air*

Additionally, it says that Jessica Andres will be acting as Suki. I have no idea what to think about this, since I have NO idea who she is. It says she acted in Gossip Girl, but… I never watched the show. Something in the name told me I’d probably have to deal with irritating stereotypes of girls, and what I have heard about it hasn’t made me feel better about. However, I found this image of her:

Somebody, PLEASE tell me more about her. I am dying to know, especially since Suki is such a lovely character… Leader of the Kyoshi Warriors! Wooo! ([Edit] Apparently she never had a speaking role there : /)

Also, note what it says in the article:

“Ringer, a 12-year-old from Texas, landed the part after demonstrating his martial arts skills in an Internet vid that he posted to a website Shyamalan set up for open virtual auditions.”

At last, my curiosity as to how Aang was cast is beginning to be satisfied! Now we just need to find the video, and find out what type of kid is he. So, internet, avatar fans, I think it is time to dust yourselves off and do some sleuthing on, well, everything in this article. o-o;

[Edit] More apparent evidence as to this casting change. And more. And a few more.

While I am glad that the cast is getting more diverse, I am dissapointed that this was because of scheduling problems, and not Paramount figuring out that they messed up with the cast. Additionally, people probably will start claiming “oh, ok, you have your asian actor, can you shut up now?” and try to take away the validity of our arguments. I think socchan says it very well when he/she commented at Aang Aint White (Saving The World With Postage) and his/her livejournal post:

“I’m similarly worried, actually. In addition to your “token Asian actor” issue, my concerns are that both Katara and Sokka have canonically darker skin than Zuko, and also that Zuko plays something of an anti-villain for a good part of the story. For basically the whole first season, while Zuko is a sympathetic character, he’s not really one of the “good guys”, and he doesn’t get to be until season three. Up until that point, the Gaang (as it stood) is still pretty much played by all white kids (assumptions made re: Noah Ringer). Suki, who admittedly has less of a problem with being portrayed as a hero, also has considerably less screen time.

I dunno; I’d call it a step towards the right direction, I guess?”

Eh. I’m feeling lukewarm about this, I guess. It is sort of awkward, since we don’t know the real motivations of Paramount. And if you think about it, the Fire Nation are the “evil guys” of the story. If you end up casting the “evil prince” as darker skinned, the rest of his nation is going to be dark skinned, right? But all the heroes are white, white, white! It makes you wonder about the message that is going to send.

However, people, keep at it! Keep writing letters, and think about going to the Protest at the Extras Casting in Philadelphia, if you can go.

An interview with Patel about being cast as Zuko

[Edit 2]

[Edit 3] Gah, now I saw a picture of a funny Dev Patel face, and I can totally visualize him as Sokka. : / The casting is just… lawlzy… Dios mio, que idiotas

[Edit 4] Upon seeing more photos of Patel, I DEMAND that somebody photoshops or draws him as Sokka now. I have no authority, but I am still demanding it! Somebody do the world an epic favour and link me to it, please!


Trackbacks & Pingbacks


  1. * Melissa says:

    Hello, Jessica has just done background gigs. This will be her first role with speaking parts. If you look her up on IMDB you can see what background acting she has done.
    I think she looks the part spot on, I cant wait!

    | Reply Posted 9 years, 1 month ago
  2. * raire says:

    Melissa – Thank you for the information! Now I am even more curious, jajaja.

    | Reply Posted 9 years, 1 month ago

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