Multiple The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power actors continued to attack fans of creator J.R.R. Tolkien and his works as racists as their show was exposed to audiences as being a black hole of creativity.
Ismael Cruz Córdova, who played Arondir, Sophia Nomvete, who played the Princess Disa, and Cynthia Addai-Robinson, who played Queen Regent Miriel, spoke with Variety’s Nick Vivarelli where they were asked about a supposed racist backlash to the casting.
Cruz responded saying, “The fact that the attention was shifted toward that shows you what the power of shows like this is. The fact that it hit that nerve, and that our being in it created such as response, just brings attention to the greatness of fantasy, the greatness of Lord of the Rings and why it’s actually good that we are here.”
“Did it become a bit too much? Absolutely! It’s taken air time from the depth of who we are as artists. But it just shows you where we are in the world and how much work we still have to do. I’m just very grateful that it’s us who are able to recalibrate, break form, reshape and make history,” he added.
Addai-Robinson then shared her thoughts, “In order to not have such an impact, the pendulum has to swing. We are right in the middle of that process. We just want to normalize. We do have to discuss it, because we are now in a space in society where need to – now and again – acknowledge exactly what is happening.”
“That level of distraction or aggression that was put towards us – it’s been a painful journey to get there – but it has elevated us. It has put us in a position where there will be a plaque one day when the pendulum has swung to where it needs to be. We will have badges upon the people who fought the great fight in order to get to a point to where there isn’t such an eruption based solely on that, when a casting announcement comes,” she continued.
Addai-Robinson then asserted, “While it’s been a challenge, it has been a phenomenal moment to be a part of. Doors are open and accessibility is available for absolutely everyone to feel safe within a franchise and a story of this scale. It’s been really important and empowering. Tears have been shed, blood has been spilled – metaphorically – but we are here. ”
Sophia Nomvete then stated, “To answer your question, we still get a ton of controversy, but there has been a shift. You know what there has been? It feels like there has been a sit-down.”
She elaborated, “It feels like we had to prove ourselves, almost. We had to defend ourselves. But it’s undeniable that these people are in the position that they are in deserve to be there and should be there. There is nobody else that could have played the role.”
“I genuinely feel that there has been a shut down,” she added. “I’ve even had apologies, which I love, even if it were just one person acknowledging that that frame of mind was wrong.”
First off, if there was any racist backlash, Variety did not provide any evidence of it and neither have any of these actors. The official The Lord of the Rings: The Rings Of Power Twitter account posted a message condemning racism the cast was allegedly receiving, but again did not provide any evidence of it actually occurring.
They wrote on Twitter, “We, the cast of Rings of Power, stand together in absolute solidarity and against the relentless racism, threats, harassment, and abuse some of our castmates of color are being subjected to on a daily basis. We refuse to ignore it or tolerate it.”
They continued, “JRR Tolkien created a world which, by definition, is multi-cultural. A world in which free peoples from different races and cultures join together, in fellowship, to defeat the forces of evil. Rings of Power reflects that. Our world has never been all white, fantasy has never been all white, Middle-earth is not all white. BIPOC belong in Middle-earth and they are here to stay.”
In conclusion, they wrote, “Finally, all our love and fellowship go out to the fans supporting us, especially fans of colour who are themselves being attacked simply for existing in this fandom. We see you, your bravery, and endless creativity. Your cosplays, fancams, fan art, and insights make this community a richer place and remind us of our purpose. You are valid, you are loved, and you belong.”
“You are an integral part of the LOTR family — thanks for having our backs,” they concluded.
What was occurring is that people were criticizing The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power’s race swapping and the complete abandonment of Tolkien’s work to push evil intersectional woke politics.
One of the biggest critics of the show, YouTuber Just Some Guy took Amazon to task over these points in a video he published back in March.
In the video he states, “The point of Tolkien’s stories is to be English in design and effect. And Middle-earth reflects that in its cultures, languages, and the appearance of its races. To change this, to remove the Englishness, or really the whiteness from Tolkien’s stories is to undermine the very purpose of his works.”
“It should be obvious that this will result in the backlash, but for some reason after watching fans reject every attempt at playing politics with major franchises like Star Trek, Star Wars, Doctor Who, and the MCU, Amazon decided to inject progressive politics into their show along with playing loose and fast with the lore,” he continued. “And we’re shocked when fans gave them the one finger salute.”
“So began the apologia, first in interview from Amazon, then by media outlets, and now by people claiming to be super fans and Lord of the Rings experts,” he concluded.
Criticizing a show for race swapping its characters is not racism no matter how much Prime Video and these actors want it to be.
No, the fault is with these actors and Prime Video. They chose to radically alter Tolkien’s work in both how the characters look and appear as well as in the substance of the storytelling.
As Eric July noted in video upload from June 2021, “Let’s talk about those actors and actresses real quick. These guys have absolutely no integrity, which is why you should not take them serious in their advocacy for, definitely, something on the subject matter of race.”
He added, “They take the gigs and I don’t think people seem to understand that or rather they lose sight of that.”
What do you make of the Rings of Power actors still doubling down on this false narrative that critics of the show’s and specifically its race-swapped casting are racists?