Star Wars fans make up one of the most passionate fan bases of any franchise. However, every fan base has a dark side and that is certainly true for Star Wars. Lucasfilm is aware of some of the racist incidents that have occurred with Star Wars fans and warned Obi-Wan Kenobi actor Moses Ingram about the possibility of this happening.
‘Star Wars’ actors have dealt with racist backlash from fans
Joining a major franchise is an incredible opportunity, but it may invite some unwanted attention. Several Star Wars actors experienced racist backlash for their roles. Most recently, this happened to John Boyega and Kelly Marie Tran, who has been open about the type of backlash they experienced during their time with Star Wars.
Tran, who starred in Episode VIII: The Last Jedi, wrote an essay for The New York Times in 2018 where she reflected on the racial attacks she received from Star Wars fans as a woman of color.
“Their words seemed to confirm what growing up as a woman and a person of color already taught me: that I belonged in margins and spaces, valid only as a minor character in their lives and stories,” Tran wrote (shared via Indiewire). “Their words reinforced a narrative I had heard my whole life: that I was ‘other,’ that I didn’t belong, that I wasn’t good enough, simply because I wasn’t like them.”
Lucasfilm warned an ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ actor about possible racist attacks from ‘Star Wars’ fans
Ingram, who previously starred in The Queen’s Gambit, is playing a powerful inquisitor who is hunting Obi-Wan Kenobi (Ewan McGregor) in the new series for Disney+. In a new interview with The Independent, Ingram shared that Lucasfilm warned her about the possible racist backlash that she could experience as a woman of color who is joining Star Wars.
“It was something that Lucasfilm actually got in front of, and said, ‘This is a thing that, unfortunately, likely will happen,” Ingram said. “But we are here to help you; you can let us know when it happens.”
The actor acknowledges that there will always be “pockets of hate” and that she has no problem hitting the “block button.” She also notes that director Deborah Chow put the proper systems in place on set so that everyone felt safe during production.
Moses Ingram says ‘Obi-Wan Kenobi’ is a very diverse series
Ingram is proud of the diversity of the cast and crew that is present in the Obi-Wan Kenobi series. She claims that this series will be the “most diversity” that will be seen in any Star Wars project.
“Obi-Wan is going to bring the most diversity I think we’ve ever seen in the galaxy before,” Ingram shared. “To me, it’s long overdue. If you’ve got talking droids and aliens, but no people of color, it doesn’t make any sense. It’s 2022, you know. So we’re just at the beginning of that change. But I think to start that change is better than never having started it.”
Ingram is joining a cast that includes McGregor, Hayden Christensen, Joel Edgerton, Rupert Friend, Kumail Nanjiani, O’Shea Jackson Jr., and Sung Kang. The first two episodes of Obi-Wan Kenobi premiere on Disney+ on May 27.