Given that the popular Netflix series Wednesday has been called “racist,” Tim Burton has defended the reason why his movies feature a lot of white people.
The 64-year-old director is best recognised for his work on the movies Corpse Bride, Beetlejuice, and Edward Scissorhands.
Wednesday, Burton’s most recent film, follows adolescent Wednesday Addams as she enrols in a new school.
He served as executive producer and director on four of the eight episodes.
Since making its streaming service debut, the comedy-horror has been a huge success.
The Addams Family spinoff even surpassed the previous record for the most Netflix TV show viewing hours in a single week.
It has received more than 341.2 million hours of viewing, surpassing Season Four of Stranger Things, which has received over 335.01 million.
But despite its enormous popularity, Wednesday has drawn criticism from some viewers who think the programme is “racist.”
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Black performers are frequently absent from Burton’s films, which has drawn criticism in the past.
Similar criticism was levelled towards his 2016 film Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children as some questioned the absence of diversity in his works.
In a Bustle interview, Burton responded to the criticism by saying that movies “either call for things, or they don’t.”
Burton stated to the media: “I remember back when I was a child watching The Brady Bunch and they started to get all politically correct, like, OK, let’s have an Asian child and a Black.
“I used to get more offended by that than just – I grew up watching blaxploitation movies, right?
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“And I said, that’s great. I didn’t go like, OK, there should be more white people in these movies.”
The movie’s lone Black actor, Samuel L. Jackson, defended Burton by claiming that it isn’t “any fault of his or his method of storytelling.”
“I had to go back in my head and go, how many Black characters have been in Tim Burton movies?
“And I may have been the first, I don’t know, or the most prominent in that particular way, but it happens the way it happens.
“I don’t think it’s any fault of his or his method of storytelling, it’s just how it’s played out. Tim’s a really great guy.”
Jackson is one of only two Black actors to be cast in a main role, despite the fact that he was portraying a villain, and Burton has 38 directorial credits to his name.
Ken Page, who also played the evil Oogie Boogie in Burton’s The Nightmare Before Christmas, is the only other Black actor to play a significant role in one of his movies.
Oogie Boogie has been branded a racist character since his name is also a “derogatory slur for African-Americans.”
Fans have complained that although Black actors play significant roles in his new series Wednesday, their characters are also portrayed as “bullies.”
Biana Barclay, played by Joy Sunday, is a bully who attends the academy.
The son of a dishonest mayor, Lucas Walker (Iman Marson), also plays a bully in the show.
Regarding this, one user tweeted:
“I’m loving the new Wednesday series, but why are all the Black actors lit so terribly?”
Another added: “Why are all the Black characters in Wednesday antagonists? Or did I miss something?”
Wednesday has been a big success for Netflix despite the criticism surrounding its casting, and there is even talk of a second season.
They “always write out at least three or four seasons’ worth of potential scenarios for the characters,” according to co-creator Miles Millar, who spoke with Variety last month.
He added: “For us, it’s always looking at the future, and when we sit down to create a show, it’s looking at multiple seasons, ideally.
“That’s never expected, but that’s the anticipation that hopefully, the show is successful… We certainly have a pretty clear runway of what we want to do in future seasons.”