(HorizonPost.com) – The new Avatar film has drawn backlash from Native Americans who are calling it “racist,” according to Breitbart. They are alleging cultural appropriation and accusing the film of promoting “white savior complex.”
Navajo artist and co-chair of Indigenous Pride Los Angeles, Yuè Begay, took to Twitter last week to condemn the film that she called “horrible and racist.”
“No more Blueface! Lakota people are powerful!” she added, garnering 12,000 retweets and 47,000 likes as people lauded her protest.
Begay also mentioned a statement that director James Cameron made in 2010 when he was against the construction of the Belo Monte hydroelectric dam in the Amazon that led to the displacement of the Lakota Sioux tribe. The conflict reportedly inspired Cameron to write the original Avatar.
Cameron had been publicly criticized when he suggested that the Lakota tribe could have won their battle 130 years ago. He speculated that if the tribe could have looked into the future and seen the state that their people have fallen into, with high suicide rates and a dead-end society, then maybe they would have “fought a lot harder.”
Users came to Begay’s defense, saying that Cameron was “profiting off of appropriation and the white savior.”
“James Cameron apparently made ‘Avatar’ to inspire all my dead ancestors to ‘fight harder,’” Dr. Johanna Brewer of Smith College tweeted, adding that people should watch a real movie that isn’t “blue trash.”
Another user blamed Cameron for his “position and privilege” to be able to victim blame and not see how indigenous communities are continuing to fight for their place in society.
At the end of its most recent quarter, Disney reached 164.2 million subscribers. When factoring in its other streaming services, the company now has more subscriptions than Netflix. Part of the company’s success is that it owns a lot of popular content, such as the animated canon of Marvel, Pixar, and Star Wars. Before the launch of Disney+, it also acquired Lucasfilm, 21st Century Fox, and other companies.
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