Racism has somehow found its way into Middle Earth, home to Elves, Orcs, and other mythical creatures. The original cast members from the Lord of The Ring trilogy have banded together to call for inclusivity following racist backlash to the new Rings of Power Prime Video series.
Elijah Wood, Billy Boyd, and Dominic Monaghan, the stars of Peter Jackson’s beloved Lord of The Rings films, hopped on social media to show support for the diverse casting in the new Prime Video LOTR series, Rings of Power. While disappointing but not surprising, some butt-hurt nerds felt the need to complain about the fictional creatures of Middle-Earth having melanin because they feel it goes against the original source material.
In a tweet, Woods shared a photo of himself, Boyd, and Monaghan wearing a t-shirt featuring the ears of Middle-Earth creatures in different colors with the caption of the tweet reading, “You are all welcome here.”
Each actor also shared a link to a virtual store, allowing them to purchase the shirt. Per the website, “50% of all proceeds will go to a charity (to be selected by Don’s community) that support POC.”
Ismael Cruz Córdova, who plays Arondir, an elven warrior in Rings of Power, responded to the writing “much love.”
Sean Astin, who played Frodo’s loyal friend Samwise also showed support by sporting a hat with the same messaging as the t-shirt.
Cordova Details The Racism He Has Experienced
In an interview with Esquire, Cordova spoke on the racism he has encountered online and having to fend off racist trolls on social media following the show’s premiere.
“I fought so hard for this role for this very reason,” he told the publication, adding that he did so that he “could carry that torch. I made sure that my elf was the most Elven, the most incredible, because I knew this was coming.”
The Cast of Ring s of Power Condemn Racism
The Rings of Power Cast also issued a joint statement condemning the racism castmates of color have been subjected to.
“We, the cast of ‘Rings of Power,’ stand together in absolute solidarity and against the relentless racism, threats, harassment, and abuse some of our castmates of color are being subjected to on a daily basis. We refuse to ignore it or tolerate it,” the statement shared on social media reads.
The statement continues, “JRR Tolkien created a world which, by definition, is multi-cultural. A world in which free peoples from, different races and cultures join together, in fellowship, to defeat the forces of evil. Rings of Power reflects that. Our world has never been all white, fantasy has never been all white, Middle-earth is not all white. BIPOC belong in Middle-earth and they are here to stay.”
“Finally, all our love and fellowship go out to the fans supporting us, especially fans of colour who are themselves being attacked simply for existing in this fandom. We see you, your bravery, and endless creativity. Your cosplays, fancams, fan art, and insights make this community a richer place and remind us of our purpose. You are valid, you are loved, and you belong. You are an integral part of the LOTR family – thanks for having our backs.”
You can add Rings of Power to the growing list of shows racist nerds have thrown fits over. HBO’s Game of Thrones prequel series, House of The Dragon, and even Star Wars has faced the same issues.
Photo: Ben Rothstein / Rings of Power