Here are some pics of the cast of Disney+’s Obi-Wan Kenobi at the London photocall in May. Ewan McGregor returned as Obi-Wan, Hayden Christensen returned as Darth Vader/Anakin Skywalker and the streaming series has introduced a new character to the Star Wars world: Inquisitor Reva, played by Moses Ingram.
Now, the Star Wars fan community has a really awful reputation for harassing and abusing every person of color within the Star Wars universe. John Boyega and Kelly-Marie Tran can testify to that, and they can also testify to the lack of support they received from Disney, from LucasFilm, from their directors, producers and costars. Boyega and Tran were left to sink or swim with the racist Star Wars fan contingent. Which is why it feels like Disney was a little bit better prepared for the racist reaction to Moses Ingram. Soon after the series premiered last Friday, Moses began getting racist and harassing messages online. She publicized them and spoke on Instagram about how sh-t needs to change:
Yet again, a new Star Wars performer has been subject to a flurry of racist backlash online. After the debut of Obi-Wan Kenobi last Friday, star Moses Ingram has had to spend the weekend shooting down trolls on social media instead of celebrating her new Disney+ series.
On her Instagram story, Ingram shared a couple of hurtful messages she received from strangers. “You’re days are numbered,” one user sent the actress. Another reads: “You suck loser,” and then, “You’re a diversity hire and you won’t be loved or remembered for this acting role.”
In Obi-Wan, Ingram stars as Reva Sevander, aka “The Third Sister,” an Inquisitor who bows to Darth Vader—essentially, she’s a villain. While we’re not programmed to like villains (and Reva is especially vicious, targeting a young Princess Leia), that hasn’t stopped fans from cuddling up to iconic characters like Vader, Kylo Ren, and Darth Maul.
Ingram opened up about dealing with these folks in another Instagram story in which she spoke directly to the camera, saying there are “hundreds” of hate messages sitting in her unread inbox.
“There’s nothing anybody can do to stop this hate,” Ingram said. “The thing that bothers me is this feeling that I’ve had inside of myself—which no one has told me—but this feeling that I’ve just got to shut up and take it. That I’ve just kind of got to bear it. I’m not built like that.”
Disney responded by telling racist fans that they aren’t welcome, which is a bit like trying to put the KKK genie back in the bottle. Disney largely placated racist Star Wars fans for years and, as I said, did next to nothing to protect Boyega and Tran. I do think Disney has learned that they need to say something at the start, and they need to at least pay lip service to the idea of “racist Star Wars fans need to go.” But yes, they nurtured this toxic fan culture for way too long.
There are more than 20 million sentient species in the Star Wars galaxy, don’t choose to be a racist.
— Star Wars (@starwars) May 31, 2022
Ingram’s costar Ewan McGregor had her back too. I like that he mentions that he’s the executive producer on this series. That might be one of the big reasons why his reaction and Disney’s reaction came so quickly.
A personal message from Ewan McGregor. pic.twitter.com/rJSDmj663K
— Star Wars (@starwars) June 1, 2022
Photos courtesy of Avalon Red.
She is beautiful.
Star Wars fans should be happy she joins the cast.
Also, racists perhaps fail to understand that Star Wars is about resisting oppressive people, which racists are too actually.
Star Wars fans can be insane. They make pop music stans and sports fans look tame in comparison (and I say this as someone who likes SW).
I like SW, but it is sad.
Yeah, I remember someone made an edit of a Star Wars movie in which they edited out every time a woman did something cool/fought well, so that they only looked weak.
Imagine the obsession.
I also know some progressive Star Wars fans who are not like that at all, but some of them are weird (and that is putting it mildly).
She is soooo pretty! I love her hairdo aswell. And the piercing.
I’ve been watching this series and she’s great in it.
She’s by far the most compelling for me.
I agree. We’re watching and she is a badass in this!
Agreed! She’s a great bad guy. I’ve only watched the first two, she’s so compelling, I’m hoping for some sort of redemption. I don’t like liking someone that cuts off a villager’s hand.
I wish they rounded out Reva’s story better. So far she is too two dimensional. angry evil villain who wants to be the best. They have better character development for secondary characters. It’s halfway through and at this point i hoped we’d get a little more personal with her. Vader and Kyle were given something to feel sympathy about but i don’t see that for Reva.
She’s fantastic and the show is actually very good. Oddly, the SW spin off shows (even Boba Fett) are arguably all better than the sequel films imo. Ewan may be messy asf in his personal life, but he’s a good actor
Also, ngl the fact that JJ Abrams, Daisy Ridley, and Adam Driver all kept their mouths shut off the harassment of John and Kelly always sat badly with me, esp. as the latter two sort of briefly complained about the fans/franchise in general at one point (I give Oscar a pass, as he had a smaller role and is already a POC in yt dominated Hollywood and had some racist sh*t thrown at him, even if it was to a lesser degree). I believe Mark Hamill defended Kelly Tran, at least, although I don’t think he defended Boyega.
Mark Hammil defended Boyega, more than once. Hammil is a staunch anti-racist.
Good for Mark then. I’ve always liked him. IDK, I’m not usually one to hold actors/singers/sports stars accountable for insane stans (I think it’s unfair to expect them to do that), but those weren’t just randos on twitter being awful in general but specifically targeting co-stars to the point they had to speak out…so in that case I think they should have said something.
So I’m pleased Ewan spoke out in defense of Moses, although at the end of the day I hold the producers/company responsible, which is why the Star Wars account in general defending her was the best.
Daisy was harassed to the point of shutting down her social media. This hateful portion of the fandom hates her and Rey. These people are horribly racist but don’t limit their hate to people of color — they bullied Jake Lloyd, Hayden Christensen, and Rian Johnson who directed Episode 8 horribly, too.
Oh I wasn’t aware of that…that’s horrible. I knew they harassed Rian & the kid pretty badly.
We watched the first two episodes of Obi-Wan this weekend (twice, once without the kids and once with the kids lol) and loved it. I’m not surprised its doing so well, streaming-wise – its telling a story that I think even a casual Star Wars fan might actually find interesting (what were Leia and Luke like as children, what was Obi Wan actually doing while Luke was growing up) and its well done.
I don’t like Moses’ character but as this article points out, we’re not really supposed to. She’s a villain, using Leia as bait to catch Kenobi. And as a villain, she is awesome. I can dislike a character while acknowledging that the actress is doing a great job in the role.
I’m not surprised she’s receiving racist backlash, which is a sad thing to admit I guess (but considering how the Star Wars community has reacted to other POC in key roles, its not a surprise); I am glad that Disney and Ewan McGregor are so quick to jump into defend her. Part of what disturbs me about these attacks isn’t just that they’re racist, but that you have people who are so invested in this fantasy world that they take the actions of a character so seriously. Like…..she’s a real person, her character is just that….a character.
If you dislike Reva then Moses has done her job 🙂
Exactly! She nails the role in my opinion. her facial expressions when the Grand Inquisitor is in her face…..she’s so good. I mean bad but good, LOL. That’s the point of a villain!
I do wonder how the fans would react if she was a white woman, or if she was a black man, or a white man. We know the answer to the last option, and have a good idea of the second option, not sure about the first (since in the newer movies the white women have been the leads, not the villains.)
@becks, i can say that if it’s anything but a white guy, these people are going to complain. if it’s anything but a side character or any character with and depth, they complain. they complain about fennec shand (one of the bossest characters in SW in a long time! love her! and ming-na wen is effing 60!) and the armorer (from the mandalorian0-there were complaints that she was a ‘mary sue’ cause she fought so well. when every other mando in the entire property are all warriors). if it’s not white dudes pew-pewing, it’s terrible social justice warrior according to some. it’s ridiculous.
i love sw, and have since i saw return of the jedi in theaters when i was a tiny tot. i hate that this is what it’s become. i’m glad disney is finally saying something supportive though.
“ I do wonder how the fans would react if she was a white woman, or if she was a black man, or a white man.”
Becks tbh, while this fandom is very racist and misogynistic and certainly are crueler toward people of color and women, they’ll bully anyone who doesn’t fit their vision of what Star Wars should be. They are being mean about the little girl who played (spoiler you know who) in these episodes, they were mean to Jake Lloyd who played little Anakin and Hayden Christensen. Writers and directors of these movies and shows get constant hate. They honestly know no bounds.
@Case, I’m sure you don’t intend this, but your posts on this story minimize the racism that Moses is dealing with. The is a common problem people of color have to deal with in situations like this. We call out the traumatic impact of racism and there are always people who are like “but what about the bullying this person experiences (which isn’t based on their being marginalized)!”Duchess Meghan addressed this in her interview with Oprah in response to the “what about-ism” of the “bullying” Duchess Kate has experienced – rude and racist are not the same thing. If you’re not a person of color you have to try hard to not do the what about-ism argument. The trauma that people of color experience by racism is in no way comparable to mean comments another person receives that is not based on race, sexual orientation, gender, etc . It is difficult for marginalized people to deal with this trauma and then deal with the minimization.
I’m in no way trying to call you out, like I said I’m sure you didn’t mean it that way and SO many people do this. I’m just trying to get people to understand this.
@Green Desert, I completely understand and am so sorry that my comments came across that way. As someone who has seen up close how wildly toxic the SW fandom is most of my life, I was just trying to explain how incredibly brutal they are — they go after child stars, they make actors quit social media, they bullied Ahmed Best to the point of considering suicide, etc. — for those who might not be familiar. There are subreddits dedicated to pointing out how toxic the fandom is; it’s bad on a level I have not seen anywhere else. I absolutely did not mean it as whataboutism but just to comment on what a truly disgusting online presence this fandom has and how much people have suffered because of it.
I understand how my comments seem to possibly minimize what Moses is dealing with though, and for that I am genuinely sorry. I absolutely did not mean to take away from Moses’ experience, which is certainly made worse by the racism she is enduring.
No need to apologize, I get what you were going for! I’m just trying to be more aware of this kind of thing as I know I have come across in ways I didn’t mean when it comes to groups I’m not part of. I always enjoy your comments and insight on here! 🙂
Thank you @GreenDesert for your comments and yours as well @Case. I agree the fandom is just toxic at this point (maybe it always was, but fandoms in the 80s, pre internet and social media, were in a different environment I guess.)
I guess one way to put it is that the fandom is reacting to Moses out of racism and some weird sense of ownership over the SW universe, and they might have (likely would have) reacted negatively to any non-white-male actor in that role, but the racism puts it on a completely different level.
Star Wars, Marvel, Hunger Games, so many of these “fan bases” are toxic, misogynistic and racist. Or I guess tbf I should say they have a toxic element and not paint the whole bunch with the same brush. I watched Obi-Wan and I thought the first two episodes were good and I enjoyed it more than Boba Fett. I’m glad Disney is finally speaking up about this but as my daughter once worked for them, I will say that a lot of that rot comes from within too, based on her experience.
I’m not sure about the “there are 20 million sentient species in the Star Wars universe. Don’t choose to be a racist,” tweet. It implies that black people are a different species than white people.
I took it as the racist was the sub-species, no? as in there are 19,999,999 other things you could be, don’t be that!
Their, and Ewan’s, support is weak.
There is no way “I stand with her” is enough. It’s just words, and a front. You really don’t like racism and really want to support her: DO something. Use your resources to better the world.
They have to start telling the racists to proper f*** off and hire people to investigate these accounts sending her shit. Then next, ban the shit out of each and everyone of them. Or join forces with other producers and franchises to hire teams to push back against this.
It’s too easy to just say “oh horrible, I support (insert discriminated and oppressed minority)” without doing something.
Racism should have CONSEQUENCES. Sexism should have CONSEQUENCES.
Not just words or a selfie video of you saying things without emotion shot in your car on your way to work.
They’ve done the bare minimum, now I’m interested in finding out how they will protect and push back?
She is AMAZING in the show – she REALLY nails it as Reva. If you dislike Reva and want to punch the character then Moses has done her job well.
This is disgusting and very sad but am I surprised at this – no, the SW fandom has a LOOOONG history of this type of toxic behaviour and yeah Disney and Lucasfilm both peddled it for money for years with the expanded universe.
I would also say that there is a deep rooted misogyny with these fandom’s as well – if a female character is not represented to what they think she should be they start throwing their collectable action toys out the playpen.
She’s fantastic and I’m fascinated by Reva. I really love seeing a female character allowed to be as full of rage and vengeance as Vader or Kylo. Excited to see more of her.
I’ve been a Star Wars fan my entire life, and this is why I generally stay away from the online fandom. It’s filled with people who bully actors, writers, and directors who they disagree with or deem worthy of hate, and they bully fans simply for liking entries into the SW universe that they don’t. It’s awful and embarrassing.
I firmly believe that racists are the loudest, but not the majority, of every subset they belong to, across the online universe.
I’d like to think that as well Merricat, but Kelly Marie Tran, John Boyega, Ahmed Best, and now Moses have had unbearably bad racism-driven encounters with people in this fandom. They may just be the loud minority, but they’re loud enough to really impact their mental health and enjoyment of participating in the series. And such people are often YouTubers or on Twitter with tons of followers they influence. It’s a bad situation all around.
I’m going to give Disney and Star Wars kudos for supporting Moses. Hopefully this means that they have learned from their inaction and mistakes when dealing with this issue in the past.
It’s nice that they are trying to support her but I will never get over the fact they reacted to Kelly Marie Tran’s harassment by basically writing her out of the third film.
This. Lost any respect for the Star Wars creative team and JJ Abrams when they basically pretended The Last Jedi never happened. Rian Johnson created a path forward for the SW universe, which was tremendously popular and excited all sorts of people who had written the series off.
But Disney and Lucasfilm only listened to the haters and now the whole franchise is tainted.
This reminds me of the university where I used to work. The administration would listen to faculty who complained about something and “fix” whatever they were yapping about. Of course, it was completely necessary, now the other 98% of the faculty were furious, and some absolutely necessary work function of the system was completely shut down. And they kept doing this, thinking that acting on complaints without first determining if they were reasonable or not was a good way to go about things.
I hate how KMT and JB were treated and not supported by Disney or Lucasfilm. The whole racist mess with fans was beyond gross. And both actors weren’t just not supported by Disney/Lucasfilm, their characters were treated really badly by the creative team behind the movies. Finn was hyped before the first movie as having a huge role, and they clearly had NO idea what to do with his character, other than make him a former janitor (puke). They treated Rose as dispensable, especially once the toxic fans started harassing her.
But that just feeds, to me, how the sequels as a whole are tainted. They were treated as nothing more than a cash cow by a business that had no respect for the actors in person or on screen, and all that mattered was the dollars they made. All three movies were a mess (including The Last Jedi, which is universally loathed among both long time and more casual fans I know). The creative team seemed to be playing everything by ear, Disney didn’t GAF because profit is profit, and they let down really great actors professionally and personally. A lot of fans gave up after the series (for both the work on screen and the behind the scenes mess).
I really do hope Disney has, at least, realized they need to stand up for their actors when the toxic fans come out. But with the whole history of these movies and lack of action when actors have been bullied by so-called fans, I think any support Moses gets is a one off.
Also, I grew up a huge SW fan. Saw the first three movies in the theater, had the action figures and my friends and I played SW every day after school. But the horrible fans (and the awful decisions in the recent movies- esp how they backed away fro Rose and Finn and pushed the love story btw Rey and what’s his face, ugh) have definitely turned me off from the franchise. It honestly makes me so sad
At some point there will be a fascinating book written about the behind the scenes mess of the sequel trilogy. Fascinating. If it was just a matter of the story not turning out? Fine. So what? But Lucasfilm and Disney wanted their cookies for diversity (they did, they wanted praise) and their “ignore the haters!” tactic emboldened the monetized alt right and left their actors open to harm. There’s a MAJOR cautionary tale there.
And for the love of Baby Yoda stop letting JJ Abrams end stories!! He can’t do it. He’s an above average action director, not a good writer!!
Anyway, Kenobi is great fun. And she’s fun. Racists can walk into a wood chipper. The end.
ITA about JJ – he relies heavily on effects and often panders to fanboys, he did it with Star Trek and Lost.
Am glad he is now no longer anywhere near these series and it better stay that way.
It was wild. I recall industry papers like Variety (which means there’s a pretty good chance it’s accurate) saying they apparently were writing huge swaths of the third film even after they started filming? It’s not unheard of for script doctors and minor edits, but massive rewrites even after the film has started is basically unheard of. And they straight up admitted it wasn’t mapped out from the start, which is even more insane, considering how much money went into the films.
I blame a lot of it on JJ, though. Felt he kind of wrote the series into a box (like Luke becoming a hermit and completely ignoring his sister was always going to have to have a wild backstory that would never satisfy hardcore fans). TLJ was my favorite of the sequel films, but even it had serious issues imo.
Even Anson Mount, Captain Pike on “Strange New Worlds”, has chimed in with support. I was pleased to see that other parts of sci-fi fandom stepping up.
People are crazy in this fandom which is why I don’t claim to be a fan anymore. The ugliness was ridiculous. Some big Twitter accounts were attacking her right on cue this weekend. And saying that the writing is bad, the directing is bad and then want to blame an actress on this show? Come on.
MerlinsDad was all “oooooooo she’s… Wow she’s gorgeous” and then he’s all “holy hell she’s not messing around” it was hysterical to watch him
I showed him this article and he’s disgusted by the responses she’s getting.
I never watch Star Wars anything, but now that I know Moses Ingram is in it, I will! She blew me away in Queen’s Gambit, I will see anything she is in.
She was so amazing and was probably the best performance. So glad she joined.
I appreciate Ewan recording his message and admonishment of the racist fanatics. Star Wars fans are notoriously hateful and racist and they constantly need to be knocked down.
It’s lame that they say don’t be racist in the second tweet, which is buried under the first tweet. It’s obvious they are doing the bare minimum and don’t want to alienate their racist fans.
Had a whole screed written but the page refreshed and it got deleted. Bottom line is, Disney ain’t shit. These performative stunts of support accomplish nothing, mean nothing, and help no one.