Progress made on casting diversity
A SECOND straight Academy Awards with no person of colour among the 20 acting nominees has the diversity debate back in the cinematic spotlight.
The controversy has seen the OscarsSoWhite hashtag dominate online, and even led some stars to threaten to boycott this year’s Oscars on February 28.
While many have argued for and against the boycott and possible changes to the industry, Success actress Chloe Ng has provided her take on diversity within the industry.
In a recent interview with the Gazette, the 24-year-old detailed recent work on Neighbours – which will screen later this month – and an Abu Dhabi TV series.
“The amazing thing is that both those roles I booked were briefed as ‘any ethnicity’ … which I see as a small step moving towards colour-blind casting and I couldn’t be more happy about that,” she said.
Ng, of Singaporean heritage, said her background had been a hurdle in the past.
“It’s certainly an ongoing conversation that will keep changing as I continue to grow and as the industry progresses as well,” she said. “It’s also a sensitive topic to comment on in general, but one I feel very passionate about.
“I think it’s really important to have non-stereotypical representations of Asians in the media, something that I realise now was lacking when I was growing up.
“When I look back, it did have an effect on me as an Asian growing up in Australia.
“It’s why I think this is really important and close to my heart.”
Ng said small steps towards ‘colour blind casting’ were being made but there was still “a long way to go”.
“This is not the case for everyone,” she said.
“There are definitely strong individuals fighting towards change and stepping up for us to get further down that path. That’s the cause I’m working for… the change I would like to be part of.”
Actress Chloe Ng will appear in Neighbours later this month .