August 31, 2009

Random moments brought to you by Paolo Montalban & Cinderella

So I was watching the busted low budget goodness that is Mortal Kombat: Conquest (which is it's own set of issues) and suddenly I recognized the actor playing Kung "May My Descendants Cut You With Sharp Hats For Peace" Lao.

It's Paolo Montalban! The prince from Cinderella!

At first I was amused & thinking of all the Filipino actors/actresses I see playing Chinese roles (it's usually "any asian'll do" in Hollywood but in this case I think Kung Lao is just...Asian. Story for another day etc). Then I flashbacked to a little story...

I couldn't have been much more than 8 or so when this Cinderella came out--you know, the one with Brandy & Whitney Houston. Surprisingly for me it's one of my favorite musicals, even though looking at it now it's not quite as awesome as I remember. I remember a comment my mom made on it that's stuck with me for some reason. She said something along the lines of (that is, almost verbatim): "How do you have a white father, black mother & Chinese son?"

I remember I was deeply confused. Why wasn't that possible? I mean, there's such thing as adoption. Plus, uh the movie was a damn fantasy musical, if we pick on the racial make up we'd have to pick on everything ELSE like the pumpkin transforming into a carriage, now.

I did and always have liked the casting of that Cinderella. It was the first time I had seen a Cinderella that was a beautiful young black woman with her hair in braids (I was rocking the braids at the time, painfully, long story). If you look on the IMDb message boards you'll see people praising the cast but steadfastly avoiding the whole "mixed race cast" thing and I'm sure many people were doing the same when the movie came out. Rolling of the eyes.

But watching that Cinderella also led me to watching Cindy...which I reeeally wish I could see again.

Ah, to be young & colorblind...for a while.

blog comments powered by Disqus