‘Hollywood is racist’


Gage Skidmore

ENOUGH. Chloe Bennet speaks out against criticism over her name change. Bennet believes that changing her name from Wang to Bennet helped her acting career. Despite media’s beliefs, she is proud of her Chinese heritage.

Jessica Lu, Staff Writer

After actress Chloe Bennet complimented actor Ed Skrein’s refusal to be part of Hollywood’s whitewashing ordeal, she faced backlash over her own last name. The “Agent of S.H.I.E.L.D” star, born as Chloe Wang, took her father’s first name, Bennet, to help further her acting career.

“Changing my last name doesn’t change the fact that my BLOOD is half Chinese, that I lived in China, speak Mandarin, or that I was culturally raised both American and Chinese.

“It means I had to pay my rent, and Hollywood is racist and wouldn’t cast me with a last name that made them uncomfortable,” Bennet said in an Instagram post, responding to the criticism.

When first launching her acting career in Hollywood as Chloe Wang, a known pop singer in Shanghai, Bennet encountered difficulty obtaining a role.

“I had a casting director tell me, ‘You’re not quite white enough for the role, but you’re not quite Asian enough for the best friend role, ‘”  Bennet said in an interview with NPR.

However, Bennet noticed that the end of her job hunt coincided perfectly with the change of her last name.
“Oh, the first audition I went on after I changed my name, I got booked. So that’s a pretty clear little snippet of how Hollywood works,” Bennet said, according to an interview with the Daily Beast.

To combat the issue of underrepresentation and stereotypes of Asians, Bennet started RUN, an organization focused on offering a representative voice.