This Article is From Jun 27, 2020

The Simpsons Will Not Have White Actors Voicing Characters Of Colour Anymore

The decision includes a recurring character from the series, launched in 1989 -- Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, a grocer of Indian origin voiced by Hank Azaria.

The Simpsons Will Not Have White Actors Voicing Characters Of Colour Anymore

A still from The Simpsons (courtesy thesimpsons)

Highlights

  • Last January Hank Azaria announced that he was abandoning the role
  • The change will also affect the character of Dr Hibbert
  • The decision happened after Mike Henry gave up his role in Family Guy
Los Angeles:

The Simpsons will no longer use white actors to dub ethnic minority characters, the producers of the long-running animated series announced Friday.

The decision includes a recurring character from the series, launched in 1989 -- Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, a grocer of Indian origin voiced in the American version of the show by white actor Hank Azaria.

The character has long been seen as problematic and conveying racist stereotypes. Last January Azaria announced that, in agreement with producers, he was abandoning the role.

"Moving forward, THE SIMPSONS will no longer have white actors voice non-white characters," Fox Studios said in a statement to AFP.

The change will also affect the character of Dr Hibbert, a man of colour dubbed by the white actor Harry Shearer who also lends his voice to many other characters on the series -- from Homer Simpson's boss Mr Burns to the chirpy neighbor Ned Flanders.

The announcement came as Mike Henry, the white actor who voices the character of Cleveland Brown, a man of colour, in Family Guy, another animated series produced by Fox, announced on Twitter that he was giving up the role.

"It's been an honor to play Cleveland on Family Guy for 20 years. I love this character, but persons of color should play characters of color. Therefore, I will be stepping down from the role," he wrote.

US is in the midst of a reckoning on systemic racism and discrimination ignited by the killing of George Floyd, an African American man, by a white police officer in Minneapolis on May 25.