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The Name Brown Face is Harsh to Hear: The Family Man 2 Creators on Criticism of Samantha Akkineni's Casting

Samantha in The Family Man 2

Samantha in The Family Man 2

Creator Raj Nidimoru has responded to the brownface criticism against The Family Season 2, saying it's 'harsh to hear'.

Among the many criticisms that The Family Man season 2 faced in the run-up to its release, was that of ‘brownfacing’ Samantha Akkineni’s character. Her character of Raji was a new addition to Season 2. The term brownface generally refers to lighter-skinned actors getting drastic darkening make-up to pass off as darker-skinned characters. The show’s creators Raj and DK responded to the criticism by saying that the decision to give Samantha a darker complexion can’t be compared to the practice of ‘black face’, where a white actor is cast as a black character.

“The name itself — brown face — is hard to hear, even for us, it’s harsh to hear. Black face, we’ve grown up reading about it, seeing it. I get it when race is involved, and you get a white person to play a Black person, or a brown person to play… It’s a different point when you get a Tamil actress to play a Tamil (character)," Raj told The Quint.

He added, “The idea is to get somebody fit for the role. The colour of skin is usually used in the context of beauty. That context is not in our series. She’s a warrior, that’s it. And how do they look? They are weather-beaten, they have sun-tanned faces, they don’t have time to look in the mirror, they don’t have time to go to the spa. The idea is that she’s a girl who’s been living that life, and that’s it. It is the right get-up for that character."

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first published:June 10, 2021, 17:56 IST