Harry Potter's Asian Fetish

No, not really.  At least I wouldn't say that about the Harry that Rowling wrote, but the movie did leave me wondering about the screenplay writer and director.

Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix came out today on Friday the 13th!!  woot!!  And Cho Chang, Harry's Chinese-Scottish love interest figures somewhat prominently in the plot.  Like most Asians living in the West, I notice things like that.

And I notice that the Cho Chang in the movie is not the same Cho as in the book.  The Cho in the books was introduced as a popular, confident, athletic student - member of the Ravenclaw Quidditch team and always surrounded by friends.  Harry is the one who has a crush on her, not the other way around.  Cho is dating Cedric Diggory, captain of the Hufflepuff Quidditch team (the wizard equivalent of the highschool quarterback) - popular, handsome, brave and kind. After Cedric dies, Cho is attracted to Harry but understandably conflicted.

In the movie, Cho is a shy, quiet, demure little China-doll, constantly making love-sick eyes at Harry and asking with a tiny breathy voice if she is holding the wand correctly.  (No sexual innuendo intended whatsoever.) She is a romanticized stereotype.  It made me cringe to watch her.

Don't know what happened between book to movie, except to say that:

1.  A lot of the nuances in the books are necessarily left out of the movies for the sake of time.


2.  While a woman wrote the book, it was men who wrote the screenplay and directed it, so they may well have brought their own biases into the story.

It's a shame too, because aside from that it was a great movie.  I saw it with a large group of people and those who could compare all agreed that overall it was better than the book.  Many thought it was the best movie of the bunch.  (I still prefer book 3 and movie 3.)

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