The official Star Wars Twitter account has issued a statement after the host of its forthcoming web series was racially abused online.
Krystina Arielle was announced earlier this month as the host of Star Wars: The High Republic Show.
The abuse was seemingly instigated after social media trolls unearthed past tweets by Arielle, in which she discusses the role of white people in upholding structural racism.
“White People: You do not get to absolve people of racism. You do not get to point out their ‘Growth’ when they say black lives matter after treating us as if we don’t. You don’t get to accept apologies on our behalf. That shouldn’t need to be said,” wrote the presenter in June.
Following the announcement of Arielle as host, she shared screenshots of some of the racist abuse she had received.
Our Star Wars community is one of hope and inclusivity. We do not stand for bullying and racism. We support @KrystinaArielle.
— Star Wars (@starwars) January 23, 2021
“The last 24 hours have been ... not the greatest,” she tweeted on Saturday, later sharing Maya Angelou’s famous poem “Still I Rise”.
In response, the official Star Wars account wrote: “Our Star Wars community is one of hope and inclusivity. We do not stand for bullying and racism. We support @KrystinaArielle.”
Doctor Maya Angelou said it best. pic.twitter.com/GnfLW4Kdke
— Krystina Arielle 🦖 (@KrystinaArielle) January 23, 2021
John Boyega, who played Finn in Disney’s sequel trilogy, and Kelly-Marie Tran, who played Rose Tico in The Last Jedi, have also both been subjected to racist (and, in Tran’s case, sexist) abuse from trolls.
Last August, Boyega tweeted: “Toxic Star Wars fans still find their way to my mentions. Lord. Must I be blunt? I don’t f*** with you no more.”
In a second post, he wrote: “Lord waited so long to tell the toxic fans to fack off.”
Boyega later addressed the Star Wars sequels’ own relationship with race, accusing the franchise of giving more prominent storylines to its white lead characters.
Addressing Disney, he said: “Like, you guys knew what to do with Daisy Ridley, you knew what to do with Adam Driver. You knew what to do with these other people, but when it came to Kelly Marie Tran, when it came to John Boyega, you know f*** all.”
Star Wars: The High Republic Show begins online on 27 January.