‘Temple of Doom’ Actor Ke Huy Quan Defends The Indiana Jones Sequel

GabboT / Wikimedia Commons

‘Indiana Jones and the Temple of Doom’ was widely released in theaters on May 23, 1984. The feature film directed by Steven Spielberg was a smash hit, even going to win the Academy Award for Best Visual Effects. It has come under scrutiny by some in the media for what they consider “problematic” depictions of Asian communities.

During an interview with the Guardian, actor Ke Huy Quan, who played the character of Short Round, defended the film and dismissed the notion that it is in any way “problematic.”

“We’re talking about something that was done almost 40 years ago. It was a different time. It’s so hard to judge something so many years later. I have nothing but fond memories. I really don’t have anything negative to say about it,” he said. “Spielberg was the first person to put an Asian face in a Hollywood blockbuster. Short Round is funny, he’s courageous, he saves Indy’s ass.”

Quan also noted that Short Round was a “groundbreaking” character for Asian representation adding, “That was a rarity then. For many years after that, we were back to square one.”

You can watch the iconic “night camping” scene between Indy, played by Harrison Ford, and Short Round.

Actor Amrish Puri, who portrayed Mola Ram in the film, defended the movie in his 2013 autobiography saying, “…it’s based on an ancient cult that existed in India and was recreated like a fantasy. If you recall those imaginary places like Pankot Palace, starting with Shanghai, where the plane breaks down and the passengers use a raft to jump over it, slide down a hill and reach India, can this ever happen? But fantasies are fantasies, like our Panchatantra and folklore. I know we are sensitive about our cultural identity, but we do this to ourselves in our own films. It’s only when some foreign directors do it that we start cribbing.”

Harrison Ford is set to reprise Indiana Jones for a fifth film which has faced many delays in production.

Jacob Airey

Jacob Airey is a writer, nerd, YouTube host, movie reviewer, and pop culture critic. He started the website StudioJakeMedia.com in 2012 where he covers a vast variety of topics including film, TV, anime, music, and faith. He is also the author of The Seven Royals fantasy novel series.

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