Twitter user have started a hilarious meme for tweeting their frustrations with the recent US-Chinese movie, The Great Wall, starring Matt Damon.
The Great Wall is a movie produced by Hollywood and China’s biggest studios, aimed to unite on both sides of the world. However, it seems to have done quite the opposite!
The movie is set during China’s Song dynasty (960-1279AD) and stars Matt Damon. He plays a European mercenary who joins a band of Chinese soldiers to defend the country from fearsome monsters.
Former EXO member Luhan appears in the movie as a soldier and was even featured in one of the trailers for a brief moment. Even with the star-studded cast, the movie has been accused of whitewashing its lead characters. Although the movie was co-produced by Chinese and American production companies, people have been frustrated at Matt Damon’s role as the movie’s hero.
To vent their frustration, moviegoers started tweeting hilarious memes with the hashtag, #ThankYouMattDamon. The tweets thank Matt Damon and his character with extreme sarcasm, sharing how he’s the only person capable of saving China.
Check out some of the best tweets below!
Matt Damon taught me how to use chopsticks. #thankyoumattdamon
— Jenny Yang👲👲🏽🐉 (@jennyyangtv) February 16, 2017
Sun Tzu didn't know war could be an art until he saw Matt Damon descended from the heavens riding a dragon. #ThankYouMattDamon
— Jimmy Lee (@JimmyQuantum) February 18, 2017
#thankyoumattdamon for teaching us that during the Middle Ages, before the United States was born, everyone in China spoke American English
— Justice For Zile (@Resist_N0W) February 16, 2017
— Evidence-Based Fetus Diem Jeakle (@JeakPaul) February 16, 2017
Putting the Asian in Caucasian #ThankYouMattDamon
— Paul Tanner (@Paul_Tanner_) February 17, 2017
While it is certainly a funny way to express their feelings about the movie, at its core lies something more serious. The White-Hero complex, where a caucasian actor is cast as the hero over someone more appropriate, has been a point of contention for a long time, with many people coming out to speak their mind on the issue.
The star of ABC‘s Fresh Off The Boat, Constance Wu, has always been a loud voice in the argument against whitewashing in TV/film and took to Twitter to post her thoughts on the movie and Matt Damon’s role in it.
Can we all at least agree that hero-bias & "but it's really hard to finance" are no longer excuses for racism? TRY pic.twitter.com/mvNet5PrtH
— Constance Wu (@ConstanceWu) July 29, 2016
However, others have come to the defense of the movie, explaining that while many movies are guilty of whitewashing, The Great Wall isn’t necessarily one of them. While Damon may be the face of The Great Wall, his character isn’t the lone hero that so many have grown to expect from this sort of movie. The argument is that Lin, the biggest Chinese character in the movie, is the true hero of the film.
This is far from an isolated event, and debates about the issue have been appearing everywhere. Another recent high-profile case was the American adaptation of the Japanese graphic novel, The Ghost In The Shell, which also received heavy criticism after announcing their choice for the lead role in the movie.