After being the target of racist and sexist insults across social media for months, Star Wars: The Last Jedi star Loan (formerly Kelly) Marie Tran doubts she'll return to the platforms anytime soon.
"I think that there are, just like anything else, really good and really bad things that come with anything," Tran shared with The Hollywood Reporter after penning an op-ed about her experience with harassment. "I felt like I wanted to write something that was honest, that truly came from me, and I don't know if I'll ever go back."
Prior to the announcement that she had joined the cast of The Last Jedi, Tran had very little social media presence, though the anticipation of the film and
Sadly, the release of The Last Jedi and a small number of detractors who didn't enjoy the film channeled their anger and directed it specifically at the actress, given that she was a newcomer in the film, with more hateful fans insulting her gender and ethnicity. Ultimately, the actress deactivated her profiles without warning, though speculation was short-lived as there were countless incidents fans could witness of the hate speech directed towards her.
Following her fans and co-stars sharing their support for the actress in the wake of her internet disappearance, Tran shared her side of the story for The New York Times in August.
“It wasn’t their words, it’s that I started to believe them,” Tran began. “Their words seemed to confirm what growing up as a woman and a person of color already taught me: that I belonged in margins and spaces, valid only as a minor character in their lives and stories.”
Star Wars fans are some of the most passionate fans on earth, yet a drawback to this is the lengths they'll go to express their ownership of a saga that is meant to be inclusive. Some fans even attempted to claim that Tran shouldn't be harassed, as it was writer/director Rian Johnson's "fault" that the character didn't fulfill their needs, demonstrating the delusion that fans objectively knew what would have been best for this film.
“I had been brainwashed into believing that my existence was limited to the boundaries of another person’s approval," Tran detailed. "I had been tricked into thinking that my body was not my own, that I was beautiful only if someone else believed it, regardless of my own opinion.”
The actress went on to reveal she had even changed her name to "Kelly" in a similar manner to how her parents adopted American names that would be easier to pronounce.
While we shouldn't hold out hope to see Tran on social media anytime soon, fans will be able to see her in Star Wars: Episode IX when it hits theaters in December of 2019.17comments
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[H/T The Hollywood Reporter]