According to the census, 4.8% of America’s population is Asian (including racially mixed). 72.4% is white (this data is confusing because they mashed Hispanic and white lineage together, 53% of people with Hispanic background identified as white as according to wikipedia where the other numbers matched up so I assume it is credible). 12.6% is black. 7.7% is hispanic. 0.9% is Native American.
According to the latest SAG report (2007-8), 3.4% of all TV/theatrical roles went to Asians. 70.7% of roles went to white people (Slide 6).
So the only group that is being misrepresented significantly in acting are whites by the numbers. Hispanics makes since, as it is estimated that there are 10-11 million illegals in the country, which brings down the realistic hispanic population down to about 4.2%. The common “We are so discriminated against” population, blacks, is actually over represented. The catch being that this is vastly skewed towards comedy. Largely due to the view of the culture to view theatrical work and speaking correctly as “too white” and is looked down upon (see Robert Griffin III, countless others, personal experiences).
This is ignoring the fact that these movies are made for white audiences, as they are the majority of the intended market (223 million or so out of 300 million). If you are marketing a product that helps people get more tan, you most likely aren’t going to try to market it to black people. So everything isn’t racist and sexist, it is by the numbers to make money. They do have cross appeal in certain movies and movies that are designed for certain subsets, but the casting numbers are an iron clad disapproval of this narrative that everything is “white-washed,” even if by our country’s demographic MOST movies SHOULD be white-washed. Yes I understand that foreign actors can come over, but most foreign actors are white Brits and actually get a large percentage of white main acting roles (Hugh laurie, Daniel Craig, Gandalf/magneto, Prof Xavier, Tom Hiddleston, Twilight guy, Daniel Radcliffe, Emilia Clarke, Sansa Stark, need I go on!?), so this number should just further skew towards whites.
Yes, Asian designed roles obviously will require Asian accents (most Asians are from Asia…). Roles that are not designed for Asians obviously have more competition, shocking, there might be better actors out there. BD Wong is a fantastic actor and usually gets great roles with no accents, Mr. Robot and SVU for example. Comedians will often be up for caricature roles and serious roles will frequently go to better actors.
I do get annoyed by the hypocrisy. Race is rarely an issue, such as ghost in the shell (Full Metal Alchemist is getting an Asian lead when “Edward” is a blonde white kid… Hilarity). The few times race is required for a role based on story and white people are taken out of the role, it is touted as “diversity.” For example, the initial Storm Trooper controversy for the new Star Wars movie. The people who have a problem with this are accused of being racist (when, at the time, it was a legit plot hole in the story).
Another hypocrisy that is slightly unrelated is the Trump judge controversy and how 2 weeks earlier he was chastised for having an all white judge list. And the white Oscar voters are supposedly not neutral due to race. And Sonia Sotomayor saying a “Wise Latina” essentially is a better judge due to “life experiences.” Seems the only diversity that doesn’t matter is INTELLECTUAL diversity (the only one that really matters.
Long story short, best actors should get the roles regardless of race and props can use 15 cents worth of makeup to match their “color” to the story, like it even matters. Also, I completely disproved an entire narrative of victim hood America with 10 minutes of research.