Disney has been criticised this week for creating a whole new role for a white actor in their live-action Aladdin remake.
It’s believed that the company has cast actor Billy Magnussen as a character called Prince Anders, rumoured to be a suitor for Jasmine, who did not appear in the original 1992 animation.
This news hasn’t helped the already bountiful claims that Disney has whitewashed the remake by casting Naomi Scott, a non-Arab actress, as Princess Jasmine. Scott, who has both Indian and British heritage will star alongside Egyptian Mena Massoud as Aladdin, Will Smith as the Genie, Nasim Pedrad as newly created handmaiden to Jasmine, Dalia (according to IMDb), and Marwan Kenzari as Jafar.
Fans are now outrage at the creation of Magnussen’s character, especially as the original folk story Aladdin and the Magic Lamp (from The Book of One Thousand and One Nights) on which the story is based contains no white characters at all.
Guy Ritchie, who is directing the film, has already received backlash from fans about whitewashing the film – not only due to Scott’s casting – but to rumours that Tom Hardy was to play Jafar. It’s a shame he hasn’t listened.