Did you see “The Hunger Games” this weekend? What did you think? I really loved it. I thought it could have been, well, gorier and more horrifying — after all, we’re talking about children fighting to the death for society’s entertainment here. But overall, I was super impressed especially with the casting. Jennifer Lawrence and Josh Hutcherson were totally on point as Katniss and Peeta, while Stanley Tucci, Elizabeth Banks, Wes Bentley, and Donald Sutherland completely nailed their supporting characters. And even though we didn’t get to know them as closely in the film as we did in the book, I was also psyched with the actors who portrayed the other Tributes.
Not everyone who saw the movie was, however. Specifically racists!
See, it seems that some “Hunger Games” fans were downright shocked and upset that the characters of Rue, Thresh, and Cinna were played by black actors. Though Cinna’s skin color is never referenced in the book, Rue and Thresh are both described by author Suzanne Collins as having “dark skin.” Racist readers must have glazed over that part, because they expressed their ire at the casting on Twitter:
“why does rue have to be black not gonna lie kinda ruined the movie.”
“Kk call me racist but when I found out Rue was black her death wasn’t as sad”
“why did the producer make all the good characters black”
“Awkward moment when Rue is some black girl and not the little blonde innocent girl you pictured”
Sadly, this is not just a couple of ignorant asshats — there are tons of tweets just like this. (You can see a bunch more of these tweets via the blog Hunger Games Tweets, which has vowed to expose these particular “Hunger Games fans on Twitter who dare to call themselves fans yet don’t know a damn thing about the books.”) And, for the record, I don’t think it matters that both Rue and Thresh were written as dark-skinned in the books. Even if they were written as light-skinned I would be appalled that people would use “sticking to the original material” as an excuse to be so unapologetically racist. Really, Rue’s death is less sad because she’s black? “Good characters” have to be white? Little black girls can’t be “innocent”? The movie was ruined for you? Who are these people? [Hunger Games Tweets]