“I’m looking forward to viewers being satisfied and the controversy fading away once the film premieres"
Claudia Kim has responded to the controversy surrounding the casting of her character in the sequel to Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them.
Last month, it was revealed that Kim would be playing Nagini in Fantastic Beasts: The Crimes of Grindelwald – the sequel to 2016’s Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them. Critics argued that casting an East Asian as a character that represents a snake is racist.
“The revelation that Nagini is actually a human woman (with an Asian actress cast in the role) cursed to become a snake is…a racist, misogynist disaster,” one Twitter user wrote.
Harry Potter author JK Rowling defended casting the South Korean actress as Nagini, claiming that the character had Indonesian origins.
Linguist Jen Moulton criticised the British author for considering representation as an afterthought.
“But suddenly making Nagini into a Korean woman is garbage,” she sad. “Representation as an afterthought for more woke points is not good representation.”
Kim has since responded to the controversy, saying that fans could have a different perspective after seeing the film.
“When I found out that I’m playing Nagini, I thought it was meaningful because it’s an important character in the Harry Potter series,” Kim said. “Harry Potter is a franchise film with many caucasian actors, so I thought many Korean viewers would be happy.”
“I’m looking forward to viewers being satisfied and the controversy fading away once the film premieres,” she added.
“I don’t perceive such controversy solely in a negative way. I believe changes can be made by giving attention to an Asian’s promotions and through the people that look into such issues.”