Elijah Wood and his Lord of the Rings co-stars advocate for fan tolerance and inclusion.
Elijah Wood and his fellow hobbits are fed up with the racist backlash directed at Amazon’s new The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power series. The Frodo actor recently took to social media with Dominic Monaghan and Billy Boyd (Merry and Pippin) to show support for the series’ diverse cast.
The three stars can be seen in the video wearing t-shirts that say “You Are Welcome Here” in Elvish, with various ears of various Middle-earth races in a variety of skin tones. Frodo’s faithful companion Samwise Gamgee was there to support him, as he always was. Sean Astin, like Elijah Wood, Dominic Monaghan, and Billy Boyd, responded with a supportive social media post, wearing a hat with the same imagery.
The link to buy the t-shirts and hats was included by Elijah Wood and the other hobbits. According to the online shop, 50% of the proceeds go to a charity that helps people of color. Despite the fact that The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power drew 25 million viewers for its first two episodes and received critical acclaim, a vocally racist segment of the fan community has criticized the casting of POC as fictional dwarves, elves, and hobbits. This would not be the first time this year that racist backlash has been directed at fantasy shows for casting fictional characters. The other major fantasy series, House of the Dragon, received negative fan feedback because some of its characters were Black. Neil Gaiman’s The Sandman on Netflix also received a lot of criticism for casting Death as a Black woman, despite the fact that the character was created by Gaiman and he had a say in the series’ casting.
Unfortunately, this is not likely to be the last racist attack on the actors in these shows. Still, it’s encouraging to see actors like Elijah Wood and writers like Neil Gaiman responding to the ridiculous criticism. Regardless, it appears that these fans constitute a vocal minority of viewers, as all of these shows have enjoyed critical success and massive viewership. House of the Dragon, The Sandman, and The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power have all been extremely popular, and this trend does not appear to be slowing down anytime soon.
If you want to see The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power for yourself, new episodes will be available on Amazon every Friday until October 14. The first two episodes have already been released. The Lord of the Rings: The Rings of Power tells stories set in the Middle-Second earth’s Age. The Second Age takes place thousands of years before J.R.R. Tolkien’s The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings. The series will follow some new and familiar faces as evil returns to Middle Earth. Morfydd Clark, Robert Aramayo, Ismael Cruz Cordova, Markella Kavenagh, Owain Arthur, Sophia Nomvete, Benjamin Walker, Charles Edwards, Nazanin Boniadi, Charlie Vickers, and others star in the series.