Rachel Zegler Responds Backlash About Snow White Casting

 RTachel Zegler in Shazam Fury of the Gods and Snow White
RTachel Zegler in Shazam Fury of the Gods and Snow White
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As Disney continues to turn its popular animated movies into new live-action productions, you can be sure that the casting of certain iconic roles are going to be a big deal. Unfortunately, in some cases, the stars that are picked by the House of Mouse to fill the shoes of its beloved characters have received pushback. Rachel Zegler has been dealing with backlash since being cast as the live-action Snow White, and the actress now says that while she appreciates the support she’s getting, she won’t be getting involved in the fight.

The West Side Story star has been dealing with a significant amount of racist backlash to her casting as Snow White since it was confirmed. While the movie is still nearly a year away, some recently leaked photos that appear to have come from the set have restarted the controversy. At present, one side is yelling that she is somehow not right for the role, while defenders point out that the 22-year-old is insanely talented, which is really the only necessary qualification. The actress herself recently took to Twitter to simply say that she’s not going to say anything, and she asks to not be included in conversations. She wants to simply send a positive message to young girls:

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At a certain point, this is all you can do. There are going to be people who will continue to have a problem with Rachel Zegler’s casting as in the live-action Snow White movie, despite the fact that we haven’t seen any of her work yet. And there likely isn’t a performance good enough that will satisfy those who've decided to have a problem.

While she could go into the weeds with these people, it's just not going to accomplish anything, so there’s no point in doing that. The best thing to do is to try and ignore it all. With Snow White still several months out from release, that’s a long time to get bogged down if you try and engage in this mess.

Halle Bailey recently underwent, and is likely still dealing with, a lot of the same thing following her performance as Ariel in The Little Mermaid. The decision to cast her in the live-action version of the movie resulted in a lot of overtly racist responses, which persisted for years, through to the film’s eventual release. Bailey largely didn’t engage with it, posting only the positive messages she got from LM fans while seemingly trying to ignore all the negative ones. Rachel Zegler is clearly taking a page from the same playbook and, sweetly enough, Zegler and Bailey have continued to support each other.

Ignoring it all entirely is likely impossible, though one would hope that Rachel Zegler can, hopefully, separate herself from the worst of it. And of course, she'll still have plenty of people in her corner as she introduces her take on Disney’s first princess. Snow White opens in theaters on March 22 as part of the 2024 movie schedule.