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Old January 5 2010, 04:46 AM   #151
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

Hyperspace05 wrote: View Post
Well comparing a 'B5 bible' to the 'Avatar bible' (or whatever Cameron would call it) is not a direct comparison.

A series bible like for B5 would naturally cover more character arcs and plotlines, whereas for Avatar more time was spent on developing the setting (the Pandora biosphere, the Na'vi language, Human technology). So it is a bit of apples and oranges.

Of course Cameron claims to have the Avatar 2 and 3 plot lines roughly sketched out, but that is far from the level of detail needed to lay the background for 20+ hours and more characters.
I'm assuming it's like Lost, where Cameron has some basic ideas down and now needs to make up the details as he goes along.
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Old January 5 2010, 04:55 AM   #152
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

Lapis Exilis wrote: View Post
Forbin wrote: View Post
DrummerBoy wrote: View Post
As a white person, I don't think I have anything to "feel sorry" for. Yeah, what white people did in the past was terrible and disgusting and I hate it. At the same time I haven't done any of it and neither did any of my direct ancestors. So I've nothing to feel guilty or sorry about.
This.

And I don't owe anybody reparations for things I didn't do.
Several people in this thread are misunderstanding the concept of white guilt. It is not so much about the crimes of our ancestors as it is about the privilege we enjoy as a result of their crimes. Many white people will deny that they enjoy special privileges, but that is because whiteness is obscured by being the dominant norm. That is, we are not trained to see the actions, behaviors and benefits that accrue to our race as being a result of our race (even though they are) because we are not trained to see our race at all - which is another psychological benefit of being white.

There's a lot more to this concept and it can be difficult to grasp - I still struggle with understanding it. But anyone who is interested can read this fairly good introduction:

White Privilege: Unpacking the Invisible Knapsack by Peggy MacIntosh
And all I can do in response to this is renew my previous objection. I started reading through the essay (only stopping when I noticed I was ranting to myself about it) and many of the things listed are not true for me if I replace "race" with "ethnic group" despite the fact that I am indeed white because I still belong to what is both an ethnic and cultural minority... a minoirty that has been frequently repressed and marginalized over history despite having more or less the same skin color as everyone else in Europe.

I do think that I understand the concept on an overall societal level and in that context I can accept it. What I can't accept is tying it to the color of skin because it seems to me that this significantly misses the diversity and historical conflict found in what we group under the term "caucasian".
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Old January 5 2010, 05:19 AM   #153
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

I'm not ashamed to say that I don't feel a stitch of guilt over being white. Why the fuck should I? I didn't ask to be born a specific race. I am not a racist and have never oppressed anyone. And I am not chosen to speak for my race (no one is) and I'm not responsible for actions committed by anyone other than my own personal self. And I'm not gloating over any advantages I might have been given, either. I simply exist.

That being said, of course I should do my part to make the world better. I just said that. But when we do that, we should do it as part of a built-in *human* obligation to do so - it's something that EVERYONE should do. It's the responsibility of every human being in existence to do so. Past sins cannot be made up for (especially ones that we personally did not commit), but future ones can be prevented.
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Old January 5 2010, 05:22 AM   #154
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

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Old January 5 2010, 05:42 AM   #155
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

Since the original post was very much about 'white guilt' as it were, it doesn't seem like this thread has veered off that much.
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Old January 5 2010, 06:48 AM   #156
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

Mr. Laser Beam wrote: View Post
Nerys Myk wrote: View Post
The Comedian wrote: View Post
Who do we owe, and what do we owe them?
I think he covered it:



to make the whole world a better place
But that's the thing. WE didn't crap on anyone. So why should we be made to pay for something we didn't do?

I'm not denying that there are 'privileges', as such. But we didn't ask for that. It just happened. We are not responsible for the crimes of our ancestors. If somebody's born into a rich family, would you force them to surrender their wealth to the government? Is the current lineup of the Chicago White Sox responsible for this?

Now of course we should *always* work to make the world a better place - nobody's saying we shouldn't. But *all* people should do that, regardless of race. It's not a special obligation for 'whitey' to do it.
"We" covers more than you and me. It's we as a people and a society. If you're working to right wrongs and make the world a better place you're covered.
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Old January 5 2010, 12:31 PM   #157
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

Nerys Myk wrote: View Post
I've always thought that B5 was horribly written from a dialog perspective. Some the actors who had to recite the stuff didn't help either. Others actually improved it by their deleivery, but not by much.
No arguments that B5's writing isn't half as good as its most earnest acolytes would claim it is, but I still feel fairly confident in stating overall it's better written than Avatar.
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Old January 5 2010, 01:35 PM   #158
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

The original article cited in the thread was down on the movie because it was racist against whites, but tried to pretend it was because it was patronizing to people of color. The crap about white guilt is just to denigrate the motives behind the movie. The Good Role Models for White People aspect of the movie is what they disliked.
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Old January 5 2010, 02:47 PM   #159
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

stj wrote: View Post
The original article cited in the thread was down on the movie because it was racist against whites, but tried to pretend it was because it was patronizing to people of color. The crap about white guilt is just to denigrate the motives behind the movie. The Good Role Models for White People aspect of the movie is what they disliked.
I'd argue that the term "white people" is itself racist. It lumps a very large, very diverse group of people all in together based purely on the colour of their skin.

There are significant cultural differences between "white" people from the north and south of England, and that's just in the same country, all within a few hundred miles. Italians and Latvians aren't the same, Danes and Irish aren't the same.

Frankly, I don't care what the motives were behind this movie. I don't care what the motives are behind movies from black directors that portray every white character as a racist either.

Movies marketed towards a particular group always end up portraying everyone outside that group poorly.
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Old January 5 2010, 02:57 PM   #160
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

Hermiod wrote: View Post
I'd argue that the term "white people" is itself racist. It lumps a very large, very diverse group of people all in together based purely on the colour of their skin.
The same can be said of every single racial classification - for Asians there are Koreans and Vietnamese, for blacks there are Nigerians and Kenyans, etc.

Movies marketed towards a particular group always end up portraying everyone outside that group poorly.
Avatar is marketed towards as large a net as possible, actually.
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Old January 5 2010, 03:13 PM   #161
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

Kegg wrote: View Post
The same can be said of every single racial classification - for Asians there are Koreans and Vietnamese, for blacks there are Nigerians and Kenyans, etc.
Sure, I never said that wasn't true, only that "white people" are as diverse as anyone else. I've heard it called racism when some casting director casts a Korean as a Japanese character because they can't tell the difference. If that's racism, then so is the term "white people".

Avatar is marketed towards as large a net as possible, actually.
Maybe it is, but my general point stands - movies aimed towards a specific group will reflect the prejudices those people have. Americans have TV channels full of movies for women where all the men are philandering wife beaters. Spike Lee will make a movie like Inside Man where every white cop in New York is a racist who thinks Sikhs are terrorists.
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Old January 5 2010, 03:22 PM   #162
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

Harvey wrote: View Post
Since the original post was very much about 'white guilt' as it were, it doesn't seem like this thread has veered off that much.
Call it a warning shot.

For the thread to remain appropriate for the SFF forum it needs to stay connected to science fiction and fantasy, specifically the Cameron film "Avatar". Otherwise, it'd belong to TNZ or Misc. Occasionalt forays aren't really a problem, but these forays have been increasing. Just keep this firmly planted in the SFF soil, and everything should be alright.
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Old January 5 2010, 03:37 PM   #163
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

Here's a sci-fi question then:

Were any of the principal Na'vi white actors? I knew Saldana was black going into the film the first time, and upon rewatching it I think all the four chief Na'vi were non-whites. Which makes Jake Sully calling Tsu'tey brother and being angrily rejected for using such a name have interesting connotations; and the CGI-creation of a third, fictive race allowed the film to define racial identity rather more fluidly, also... though the white Na'vi were the fakes, the avatars, Jake and Norm and Grace.
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Old January 5 2010, 03:43 PM   #164
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

Kegg wrote: View Post
Here's a sci-fi question then:

Were any of the principal Na'vi white actors? I knew Saldana was black going into the film the first time, and upon rewatching it I think all the four chief Na'vi were non-whites. Which makes Jake Sully calling Tsu'tey brother and being angrily rejected for using such a name have interesting connotations; and the CGI-creation of a third, fictive race allowed the film to define racial identity rather more fluidly, also... though the white Na'vi were the fakes, the avatars, Jake and Norm and Grace.
Zoe Saldana, CCH Pounder, Laz Alonso, and Peter Mensah are all black. Wes Studi (Neytiri's father) is Native American. (Studi actually appeared in "Dances with Wolves".) So yeah, all the Na'vi were played by "non-white" actors.
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Old January 5 2010, 04:01 PM   #165
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Re: When Will White People Stop Making Movies Like "Avatar"?

I was thinking about this thread some more yesterday and have decided from those thoughts that I honestly feel more guilty about being a human being in general than anything to do with the color of my skin.

I think people suck in general, and that it doesn't have anything to do with race. Bill Hicks once called people "A virus with shoes", and I think that's pretty accurate.
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