Alison Brie Regrets Lending Voice to Vietnamese American Character on ‘BoJack Horseman’
Actress Alison Brie expressed her regrets in portraying Diane Nguyen, a Vietnamese American character in the hit animated show “BoJack Horseman.”
Brie’s apology: In an Instagram post on June 27, the 37-year-old actress wished she hadn’t taken the role of Diane in the Netflix show.
“I now understand that people of color, should always voice people of color. We missed a great opportunity to represent the Vietnamese-American community accurately and respectfully, and for that I am truly sorry. I applaud all those who stepped away from their voiceover roles in recent days. I have learned a lot from them,” she added.
“BoJack Horseman” follows the story of Bojack, an anthropomorphic horse and 90s sitcom actor who plans to make a comeback in show business by releasing an autobiography written by Diane Nguyen, a ghostwriter he hired.
Diane is described as a sometimes shy and awkward intelligent, third-wave feminist who cares a lot about her friends, according to CBR.
Brie voiced Diane in the Netflix series up until its sixth and final season in January 2020.
“BoJack Horseman” garnered critical acclaim during its release on Netflix.
It received two Primetime Emmy nominations and became a staple in the streaming platform’s original animated lineup, Deadline reported.
Further details: In addition to Brie, “BoJack Horseman” creator Raphael Bob-Waksberg also expressed his regrets for his casting choice for the role of Diane.
Bob-Waksberg said he evaded questions on social media about the matter, defending that it was “mostly because my own understanding of the issue was evolving (it still is!) and I didn’t want to give a defensive or half-thought-out answer.”
However, at some point, he thought he could rationalize his casting decision, but added: “The more I thought about it (and listened to other people) the more I felt like it WASN’T okay.”
“Even in the small ways we wrote to Diane’s experience as a woman of color, or more specifically an Asian woman, we rarely got specific enough to think about what it meant to be SPECIFICALLY VIETNAMESE-AMERICAN and that was a huge (racist!) error on my part,” Bob-Waksberg continued.
“The intention behind the character is I wanted to write AWAY from stereotypes and create an Asian American character who wasn’t defined solely by her race. But I went too far in the other direction. We are all defined SOMEWHAT by our race! Of course we are! It is part of us!”
Other actors have also stepped away from their non-White roles, including Jenny Slate for her role as Missy, a Black biracial character in Netflix’s “Big Mouth,” and Kristen Bell for voicing the character Molly in “Central Park,” Metro UK reported.
Many people might not know this, but despite our large and loyal following which we are immensely grateful for, NextShark is still a small bootstrapped startup that runs on no outside funding or loans.
Everything you see today is built on the backs of warriors who have sacrificed opportunities to help give Asians all over the world a bigger voice.
However, we still face many trials and tribulations in our industry, from figuring out the most sustainable business model for independent media companies to facing the current COVID-19 pandemic decimating advertising revenues across the board.
We hope you consider making a contribution so we can continue to provide you with quality content that informs, educates and inspires the Asian community.
Even a $1 contribution goes a long way. Thank you for everyone’s support. We love you all and can’t appreciate you guys enough.