Ed Skrein Steps Down from ‘Hellboy’ Reboot After Whitewashing Accusations
Just one week after announcing his new role as Major Ben Daimio in the upcoming Hellboy reboot, actor Ed Skrein has issued a new update saying that he has officially resigned from the production. In his statement, Skrein said that he "accepted the role unaware that the character in the original comics was of mixed Asian heritage." He gave up the role after a wash of controversy where fans pointed out the character's original heritage. Skrein, whose family is of "mixed heritage" decided to respect the importance of "representing this character in a culturally accurate way" and let the role be "cast appropriately."
The studio behind the film, Lionsgate, released an accompanying statement about Skrein's decision.
"Ed came to us and felt very strongly about this,” Lionsgate said. “We fully support his unselfish decision. It was not our intent to be insensitive to issues of authenticity and ethnicity, and we will look to recast the part with an actor more consistent with the character in the source material."
Fans who had been causing the outcry, as well as a host of new supporters, have lauded Skrein's choice to honor the character's original ethnicity after a year (and industry history) of ignoring or not even considering diversity within casting.