Ab Fab films comes under fire for hiring white actor to play Japanese character

Ab Fab's Jennifer Saunders and Joanna Lumley. Derek de Koff

The Absolutely Fabulus film has come under fire for allegedly using “yellowface” and casting a white actor to play the role of a Japanese person.

The character in question, Huki Muki, is a Japanese fashion designed portrayed by Janette Tough.

She was recently spotted filming with Joanna Lumley and Jennifer Saunders.

Korean-Amerian comic Margaret Cho ranted on Twitter about the casting of the character:

Margaret Cho, Korean-American comedian, tweeted her disgust at the film’s casting of the character.

“Have some respect. Hire Asian actors 4 Asian roles. I’m not going to name the production but I’m DISGUSTED!

“#YELLOWFACE is racism. Sorry. It’s unacceptable. Not now. I was thrilled about #abfabmovie but now I just can’t be. I’m very disappointed.”

“It’s hard enough to get into film and TV as a person of color – and when roles written for us are played by white actors – it’s an outrage.”

Of course, having not seen the film, it’s entirely likely — if not a forgone conclusion — that Huki Muki’s actual race will be a big reveal or plot twist, and the character herself will be called out for being a fraud and phony.

We’ll find out when the film hits theaters on July 1.

This Story Filed Under