Several performers of Amazon’s new series “Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power” have been beleaguered by hateful comments from viewers who have criticized the casting of people of color
such as Elves, Dwarves, and Harfoots, among other fictional races. (Most of the roles were created for the show, including the elf Silvan Arondir, played by Ismael Cruz Córdova, and the dwarf Princess Disa, played by Sophia Nomvete, two actors who have been the target of hate messages.)
The cast members spoke out about the racist comments they received, and now they have the support of the original hobbits Wood
, Dominique Monaghan
and Billy Boyd, who played Frodo, Samwise, Merry, and Pippin, respectively. All four actors appeared wearing gear that read, in Elvish, “You’re all welcome here,” as well as several different character ears in an array of skin tones. (Tolkien created various dialects of Elvish
for his works.)
and the hats were made by Don Marshall, a TikTok user with over 590,000 followers who actions
“Obscure facts about the ‘LOTR’.” Earlier this month, Marshall, who expressed his excitement for the new series and its new characters, asked his fans to help him identify users who left racist comments on his videos, saying
he had already blocked about 100.
JRR Tolkien, who wrote “The Hobbit” and the “Lord of the Rings” trilogy between World War I and World War II and the period after, has been accused by some readers of espousing racist ideas
in his novels, especially in his portrayal of Elves, Dwarves and Orcs. And Jackson’s “Lord of the Rings” film trilogy features virtually no people of color in critical roles.
“Rings of Power”,
meanwhile, features people of color in central roles, including Córdova, Nomvete and Nazanin Boniadi, who plays Bronwyn. British-Iranian actress thanked
the “tenacious, courageous and resilient women of (her) homeland” for inspiring her character.
But some fans were angered by the newly inclusive Middle-earth, sending hateful comments to the actors themselves amid reports
of the series being “revised bombed”
(i.e. flooding the internet with so many bad reviews that it distorts the true percentage of reviews and viewers who liked it).
Córdova, an Afro-Latino actor from Puerto Rico, is the first person of color to play a Tolkien elf, yet for the past two years he has been inundated with ‘pure and vicious hate speech’ on social media. social, he said. Squire
“I fought so hard for this role for this exact reason,” he said. “I felt I could carry this torch. I made my elf the most elven, the most amazing, because I knew it was coming.”
Nomvete also anticipated a hateful reaction to her casting, especially since she is also the first female dwarf in a film adaptation of Tolkien’s work. She told the daily beast
that it primarily focuses on improving representation in the fantasy realm.
“People of color exist in the world. And so I find it utter madness that we don’t exist or can’t exist in the world of fantasy, of all places.”
Other cast members defended themselves: Morfydd Clark, who plays elf hero Galadriel, said Reverse
this fan claim that the series deviates from Tolkien’s original ideas is baseless.
“This idea that anyone could know exactly what (Tolkien) would have wanted or liked is, I think, nonsense,” she said.
Córdova thanked Astin and Wood for supporting the cast of “Rings of Power.”
“We belong to Middle-earth”, Córdova wrote