Film and TV Opinion

Let’s Name The Vietnamese/Asian Australians involved with SBS Mini Series “HUNGRY GHOSTS” And Why We Need To Stop Whitewashing The Media Around It

The main purpose of this post is to highlight loud and proud and in bold the Asian Australian cast and crew of SBS “HUNGRY GHOSTS”, so here it is before we get into the rest of the post!

CAST

1. CATHERINE VAN- DAVIES 

2. FERDINAND HOANG 

3. GARETH YUEN 

4. GABBY CHAN

5. SUZY WRONG

6. JILIAN NGUYEN 

7. HOA XUANDE 

8. HAIHA LE 

9. SUSAN YOUNG 

10. LAP PHAN 

11. TRACKIE TRAN 

12. CRYSTAL WANG 

13. MAX BROWN

14. VICO THAI 

15. OAKLEY OK KWON

16. CHRISTOPHER JOHN QUYEN DINH

17. ROBERT PHAM

18. LINDA HSAI

19. ANN TRUONG

20. LAWRENCE MAH

21. JOANNE NGUYEN

Director: SHAWN SEET

Writers: MICHELE LEE, JEREMY NGUYEN, ALAN NGUYEN

Now here are some thoughts on the media promoting this series….

Soon, SBS upcoming mini series “HUNGRY GHOSTS” will be gracing the small screens in Australia and after reading the premise of the mini series, I can’t help but feel excited about it for a number of reasons. Sitting here on my throne as an Asian Australian living in Southern California, I am already thinking about it and have a VPN (virtual private network) to get around the geo blocking systems. But more importantly, I am reflecting on how important it is to tell authentic and personal stories, and “HUNGRY GHOSTS” looks like it will be something pretty on point in terms of authenticity and personal.

So what is it about? It is basically a “ghost story” when an amulet is broken in Melbourne amidst the “Hungry Ghosts” festival bringing out an evil spirit which brings back the dead within Melbourne’s Vietnamese Australian community. Essentially the story centres itself on 3 generations of Vietnamese Australian families facing their trauma from their experiences of war. What is most awesome about this series is that it features a huge ass cast of Asian Australian actors as well as directors and writers of Asian Australian descent. But out of all the fanfare and the minimal Australian media reporting of it, only the white Australian actors get headlined in the media around it, with a small bit in the SBS article naming the Asian Australian actors who feature in it.

My issue with this is that it is a mini-series centred around Vietnamese Australians and their experiences, so why are the white Australian actors headlining the media around it? Is Australian media saying that Asian Australian actors are not fit to headline articles when the premise is about us? Do we need to centre everything in Australia on whiteness? I would have thought with the success of Crazy Rich Asians, Searching, Always Be My Maybe, Family Law etc that this type of situation can be avoided and prevented. Alas, I guess not…

SBS mini-series “HUNGRY GHOSTS” is set to grace Australian small screens this year, so very soon – please keep your eyes peeled and you will hear more from me on this series. We need to celebrate and support our own Asian Australian content and keep creating and pushing because if we don’t no one else will!

3 comments

  1. Exactly, I was surprised at this as well!! When I googled it, all the early articles were about the white actors, they didn’t name any Asian actors. This needed to be said!

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: