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‘Percy Jackson’ Author Criticizes Racist Casting Backlash

Actress Leah Jeffries was cast as Annabeth Chase in the Disney+ adaptation of Rick Riordan’s beloved novels. In the books, Chase is described as White, and some fans have criticized Jeffries’ casting for not visually lining up with the books.

Riordan was quick to defend Jeffries and condemn the haters in a blog post published Tuesday.

“You are judging his suitability for this role solely and solely by his appearance. She is a black girl playing someone who is described in the books as white,” she wrote. “Friends, that is racism.”

Since the casting announcement was revealed last week, Riordan said Jeffries has been on the receiving end of racist and other online harassment. In his post, Riordan called these comments “off the mark” and demanded they stop. Still, most of the response to the casting announcement has been positive, she said.

“Leah brings so much energy and enthusiasm to this role, so much of Annabeth’s strength. She will be a role model for new generations of girls who will see in her the kind of hero they want to be,” she wrote.

On Twitter, Riordan also launched the hashtag #LeahisOurAnnabeth, which trended on the website. for Tuesday afternoon.

“Percy Jackson and the Olympians” is a middle grade novel series first published in 2005, following a neurodivergent boy who discovers he is the son of Poseidon, the Greek god. Disney released two movies based on the series: “Percy Jackson & the Olympians: The Lightning Thief” in 2010 and “Percy Jackson: Sea of ​​​​Monsters” in 2013. A premiere date for the series has not yet been announced. from Disney+.

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