Daredevil Actor Peter Shinkoda Claims Jeph Loeb Made Racist Comments
Actors are no longer afraid to call out their bosses for bad behavior.
Peter Shinkoda, who played Nobu in Netflix’s Daredevil, has accused Marvel Television chief Jeph Loeb of racist comments. Shinkoda alleges that Loeb made specifically anti-asian claims as an excuse to cut storylines for his character and and Madame Gao (Wai Ching Ho). He made the claims during a livestream hangout for #SaveDaredevilCon, where he discussed the series alongside fellow actors Geoffrey Cantor (Ellison) and Tommy Walker (Francis).
Shinkoda said, “I’m not into really protecting, you know, certain things anymore but Jeph Loeb told the writers room not to write for Nobu and Gao and this was reiterated many times by many of the writers and showrunners. He said, ‘Nobody cares about Chinese people and Asian people. There were three previous Marvel movies, a trilogy called Blade that was made where Wesley Snipes killed 200 Asians each movie. Nobody gives a shit so don’t write about Nobu and Gao.’ And they were forced to put their storyline down and drop it.”
Shinkoda added that much of his character’s backstory was dropped saying, “the writers told me that they regretted, they were reluctant to do it, they were so stoked about including that in the storyline but they were prevented, so I had to concoct this other storyline and rock that material that I was given …”
Cantor and Shinkoda discussed the changes in inclusion and diversity, despite Daredevil being made a mere 5-6 years ago. In that time, there has since been a massive shift in the movement for racial injustice, that would no doubt yield different results if the series was made today.
Walker added, “Heck, I think that would have permeated into Iron Fist … ” which at the time was already lambasted for its white savior tropes.
Looking back on Daredevil, the series struggled with its portrayal of The Hand, and absolutely gave short shrift to Nobu and Madame Gao. These story issues came to a head in the underwhelming and muddled Defenders crossover series. The miniseries was a massive squandering of talent and potential.
Walker added that Doug Petrie had tried to pitch a multiracial version of Danny Rand, which was later rejected by the studio, saying “A very good friend of mine Doug Petrie, the showrunner of Season 2 of Daredevil, he was on Season 1 as you know and then an executive producer on Defenders. I think I can say this much safely that man came up with some brilliant pitches for Iron Fist early on before Iron Fist was well into production…but they were along those lines, very very thoughtful very progressive for the time.”
Many took to Twitter to call out Loeb and express their support for Shinkoda. This is also not the first accusation leveled at Loeb, who appeared at a Comic-Con panel dressed in a karate outfit:
Loeb who ignored calls from fans to cast an Asian-American actor in the Danny Rand role, also felt wearing this karate Halloween costume below at San Diego Comic-Con was a good idea while promoting IRON FIST.
Luckily, actress Jessica Henwick called him out on stage for it. pic.twitter.com/vksy7Nu6mM
— Christopher Marc (@_ChristopherM) July 26, 2020
When you make decisions that are solely based on the status quo, without recognizing the changing culture around you, you deny the reality that your audiences are living every day.
Power to @PeterShinkoda for speaking his truth.
Shame on you, Jeph Loeb.
You’re very local. https://t.co/xecODM4vBl
— William Yu (@its_willyu) July 26, 2020
Among other things, this perhaps helps contextualize how firm Loeb was about Iron Fist’s title role not being updated with an Asian actor.
— Phantastic Geek 😎🛡, 🖖@🏠 & 😷 (@PhantasticGeek) July 26, 2020
First Ray Fisher now Peter Shinkoda…we stand for POC actors standing up to abusive / racist creatives https://t.co/KhmmuUOyT0
— Cluver (@CLuver03) July 26, 2020
(via CBR, image: Netflix/Marvel)
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