From Splinter End
By openly preferring Caucasian actors over Asian actors in an open casting call, Paramount demonstrated their innate racist assumptions – that a no name White actor was more capable of increasing box office numbers and (perhaps) “acting” than an equivalent Asian actor regardless of the Eastern-based characters in the series. Additionally, by casting Asian actors as secondary or supporting characters, Paramount clearly wished to create an “authentically diverse” universe, one that is distinctly Eastern and non-Western in its roots.
This purports my conceit that Paramount blatantly reinforces racism at the institutional level, driven by innately racist assumptions and an ethnocentric desire to bundle Eastern culture – rich in history and human stories – into a big old Yellowface bowtie. Make it as pretty and shiny and “Asian-y” as you want – in the end, this movie is racist and a disrespectful slap in the face of the Eastern heritage it so wishes to profit off of. The studios underlying assumption about marketability and acting capability of White over Asian actors is insulting, and to claim that their production is “diverse” because they cast Asians as secondary and supporting characters ignores the bigger issue at hand – the starring, main Asian characters are portrayed by White actors instead of Asian actors.