hollywood, white people, and foreign settings

This hilarious item from C.H.U.D. hits the nail on the head when it comes to Hollywood's handling of foreign histories and locales: WHITE EYE FOR A RED DRAGON. Basically, Hollywood believes western audiences can't swallow other cultures, races and ethnicities on film without a healthy spoonful of white people smoothing the way for them. Like, handsome white Leonardo DiCaprio leading us through the diamond trade in Sierra Leone, or handsome white Tom Cruise showing us Japan at the end of the samurai era, or a hundred other movies doing the exact same thing in different locations and eras. And now, we have Robert De Niro. According to Variety, De Niro and his producing partner, Jane Rosenthal, have opted to use the rise of Chairman Mao Zedong as a backdrop for a love story between a white journalist and "a Chinese interpreter who may have been a spy": De Niro, Rosenthal team on 'Dragon'. Ugh. It's apparently based on Roy Rowan's book Chasing the Dragon: A Veteran Journalist's Firsthand Account of the 1949 Chinese Revolution.

Speaking of movies about white people in China, The Children of Huang Shi is an upcoming movie set during the Japanese invasion of China during World War II. Before you get all excited, this isn't a movie about that conflict. Rather, it's another one of these movies about white people coming in to save Asians from their miserable predicament. It's about "a conscientious reporter (Jonathan Rhys-Meyers) who leads a bunch of war orphans to a remote village away from the fighting." The movie also stars Chow Yun Fat and Michelle Yeoh, and is directed by Roger Spottiswoode, the guy behind such fine films as Stop! Or My Mom Will Shoot. More info here: CHILDREN OF WAR.

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