‘Avatar 2’ guilty of ‘cultural appropriation,’ film critic claims in ridiculed tweet

By | December 20, 2022

Film critic Kathia Woods offered what many called an “offensive” and “racist” take on Twitter Sunday night by claiming that the “Avatar” film series is an example of “cultural appropriation.”

“Avatar: The Way of Water,” the long-awaited sequel to James Cameron’s 2009 film “Avatar,” officially hit theaters on Friday after several delays and nearly five years of production. Since “Avatar” is the highest-grossing film of all time with more than $2.8 billion in global ticket sales, anticipation was high for what the sequel could bring.

However, Woods offered a less excited perspective of the film, suggesting that it’s an example of “cultural appropriation” with White actors portraying the fictional alien race the Na’vi.

“At some point we gotta talk about the cultural appropriation of Avatar and white actors are cos playing as poc. It’s just a mess and so not necessary & no amount of visual effects/CGI is gonna erase that. Bad Lace fronts/Dry synthetic braids .Jesus fix it,” Woods tweeted.

Fans attend a premiere for the film “Avatar: The Way of Water,” at Dolby theater in Los Angeles Dec. 12, 2022, and director James Cameron arrives at the world premiere of “Avatar: The Way of Water” in London Dec. 6, 2022.
(REUTERS/Toby Melville/Mario Anzuoni)

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After several social media users mocked and attacked the tweet shortly afterwards for claiming that playing alien characters is somehow “appropriation,” Woods made her Twitter account private.

“James Cameron didn’t even try to find native blue people to play these roles smh,” Washington Free Beacon investigative reporter Andrew Kerr tweeted.

Washington Examiner columnist Becket Adams agreed, writing, “it’s true. it’s disgusting james cameron didn’t cast any actual na’vi actors in a movie about the na’vi.”

“No, no we don’t have to talk about it,” The Federalist writer Anna James Ziegler wrote.

Libertarian writer Hannah Cox tweeted, “When you’re so woke you start grouping made up aliens in with actual people of color. Like this is so offensive, what the heck.”

“Avatar: The Way of Water” came out on Dec. 16, 2022.
(20th Century Studios via AP)

European Conservative contributor Alberto Miguel Fernandez, “Assume this is a parody account. James Cameron is ‘culturally appropriating’ because he didn’t hire any blue people? And even worse when you learn that the original script for #Avatar was written by the decidedly non-blue Cameron.”

“Only nine-foot tall blue aliens can play nine-foot tall blue aliens in movies, apparently,” radio host Dan O’Donnell joked.

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Although Woods attacked “Avatar: The Way of Water” for having “White actors” portraying “people of color” characters, the film actually features several non-White characters playing the alien characters including Emmy-nominated actress CCH Pounder and Zoe Saldaña, who reprises her role as “Neytiri” in the sequel.

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James Cameron at premiere of

James Cameron at premiere of “Avatar: The Way of Water.”
( Gareth Cattermole/Getty Images for Disney)

While Woods limited replies to her tweets, she eventually responded to backlash from her opinion, claiming that “some people on the right” were the only ones angry.

“Apparently I made some people on the right mad with my Avatar tweet to the point someone email me. Thank you,” Woods wrote on Monday.

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