FAST & THE FURIOUS 2
The most positive thing I can say about the sequel is that there are two Asian American speaking characters helping the heroes. One, an Asian mechanic named Jimmy, and the other an Asian female driver name Suki who is also the girlfriend of a Caucasian racing promoter Edwin. But the Asians are secondary characters and definitely have less play time than Rick Yun and his gang.
Now for the bad news. First these writers need diversity and sensitivity training (see specific comments below). In my long career in script reading never have I seen a more racist script. They are lazy and rely on easy writing fixed to make a diverse cast unique. Second, this movie once again relies on a very dated formula of keeping the bad guys one particular race. The first movie it was the Asians, this time it’s the Latinos particularly Cubans.
The original 2000 summer blockbuster had Rick Yun, but kept his face and name out of movie posters and billboards. It featured him with other nameless Asians as evil one-dimensional thugs and villains – believe it or not, the sequel is worse. Through an anonymous source, MANAA has received a copy of a production draft of Fast & The Furious 2 and this franchise continues to disappoint and insult. The sequel limits the Asian male’s involvement in the street-racing scene even further by not featuring any Asian male character of consequence. There is one non-speaking Asian male driver and another (played by Asian Rapper, Jin) who plays a mechanic/technician and has a few scenes with minimal speaking lines. Additionally, the Asian with the most screen time is female - half-Asian/half-Caucasian part-time actress/part-time model, Devon Aoki.
The import car scene is a billion-dollar industry, and although it’s popularity has span to many youths of different races, it was founded and supported early-on by Asian Males. To put this in another perspective, compare this to past celebrities such as Al Jolson and Elvis using music and choreography from Black artists to improve and enhance their appeal and popularity, and yet do nothing to credit or advance the people they blatantly steal from.
We also find this movie to be as equally offensive to Latino Americans as well. In the same tired formula that the original movie followed, all the bad guys are Latino males. These Latinos have no redeeming qualities, no dimension in their character, and is described (in the script) in an unflattering light. Action will also be taken against the writers who unnecessarily uses very degrading, racist and sexist language to describe the minority characters.
We’ve contacted Universal and director John Singleton with very minimal results. Some of the explanations to the lack of any Asian male roles are:
· It takes place in Miami and the city has very little Asian presence.
· It features Devon and Jin, which should satisfy their quota of Asians in this movie.
· There was a lack of quality Asian male talent and could not find anyone qualified enough to play the co-lead roles in this movie.
They also felt that this issue is not important enough to garner an advance screening and a meeting with the producers to this movie.
If you feel this issue IS important, then you can help. First and foremost, DO NOT SEE THIS MOVIE – ESECIALLY ON OPENING WEEKEND. Spread the word to anyone and everyone that you feel would be interested and would help support our fight. Sign our online petition that will go to directly to Universal Head Ron Meyer, Producer Neil Mortz, and Director John Singleton. If you want to personally write a letter of complaint, click here for a list of contacts. Together we can make a difference.