Aziz Ansari Discusses Brownface with Conan
November 23, 2015 -In a recent episode of CONAN, Aziz Ansari appeared to promote his new Netflix series Master of None. One storyline touches on ethnicities in entertainment, which got Ansari wondering whatever happened to the Indian actor who played the character of Ben Jahveri in 1988’s Short Circuit 2. Turns out it wasn’t an Indian actor, but actually caucasian Fischer Stevens in brownface.
“I called him because you see that stuff and it’s like oh, my god, that’s horrible, racist. I was writing a “New York Times” article and I was like I want to call him and hear his side of the story. I feel like now, Internet culture, we’re all just sharks looking for blood and anytime someone says racist stuff or drops an n-boom, I feel like there are all these websites that are like yes! We can talk about this for a month this is awesome. We should talk with people and look for dialogue and understanding. I talked to him. He was a young actor, like 21. They offered him a huge part in this movie. Originally it was supposed to be a white guy and then at some point they were like we changed to an Indian guy. Can you do Indian? He said yeah, I’ll figure it out. He worked with a dialect coach and spent time in India and he tried to do it in a thoughtful way.”
Watch the interview here courtesy of TBS: