Family Guy and The Simpsons Characters of Color Getting Recast

039;Family Guy' Actor Mike Henry Steps Down as Cleveland

White voice actor Mike Henry announced this weekend that he will be stepping down from his role as Cleveland, a Black character, on Fox's Family Guy, a role he also played in the spin-off The Cleveland Show.

In an announcement on Twitter, he wrote that, while he loves the character and considers it an "honour" to have played the role, "persons of colour should play characters of colour".

Mike Henry also does the role of Consuela, on Family Guy, the Latina maid. He also headlined The Cleveland Show for four seasons (2009-2013) on Fox.

Back at the beginning of the year, Hank Azaria chose to vacate the role of convenience store owner Apu on The Simpsons after the character became embroiled in controversy for not just encouraging stereotypes of Indian characters, but for being voiced by an actor who was white. Now The Simpsons will be following suit across the board by no longer having white actors voice any characters of color from here on out. Earlier this year, Azaria confirmed to the New York Times he would cease voicing the character.

"Moving forward, The Simpsons will no longer have White actors voice non-White characters", the show said in a statement.

It's unclear when exactly Family Guy's Cleveland overhaul will take effect or how far along the recasting process is.

Henry finally gave into external pressure, after playing the Family Guy character for 20 years.

Actress Jenny Slate has also recently announced that she will be relinquishing her role as the voice of the bi-racial character Missy on Netflix's animated series Big Mouth, apologizing for her "white privilege" and claiming that she has benefited from a "system of societal white supremacy".

"I now understand that people of color, should always voice people of color".



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