Culture The Simpsons stand-up comedy comedians racism Hari Kondabolu hated being called Apu growing up. Now, as an adult, the character will never escape his life. Last November, the Brooklyn-based comic launched The Problem With Apu, a controversial documentary that calls into question the racial legacy of a beloved character on The Simpsons, Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, described by Kondabolu as “a white guy doing an impression of a white guy making fun of my father.” The one-hour feature explores the origins of the stereotype character while tackling larger issues of minority representation in the mainstream media with some of the biggest names in showbiz, including Aziz Anzari, Hasan Minhaj and Whoopi Goldberg. The documentary sparked perhaps one of the most heated public racial discussions in recent years. Last month, Hank Azaria, the white actor who voiced Apu, said he was “perfectly willing and happy” to give up the role after calling for more South Asian or Indian writers to be included into the show’s writers’ room. The Simpsons creators, meanwhile, continued to shrug off the criticisms. “Matt Groening didn’t watch the documentary,” Kondabolu told Newsweek. “It just feeds into this empty rhetoric about political correctness from people who don’t even engage in the nitty-gritty of… Read full this story
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