Sorry guys, Joey King is not starring in the upcoming live-action Avatar: The Last Airbender remake. Yep, the actress set the record straight and addressed rumors once and for all that she had auditioned for the role as Katara in Netflix’s new show.
“I have zero involvement in this project and didn’t know this project even existed until I logged onto Twitter today and my timeline was flooded with these rumors,” the Kissing Booth star wrote on Twitter. “I do not believe a white woman should play a character of color. Not me or any white woman for that matter.”
For those who missed it, the streaming service announced that they were turning the Nickelodeon animated classic into a brand new reimagined show back in 2018, and at the time, they revealed that the series’ original creators, Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko, were on board.
AND I can confirm that the original creators, Michael Dante DiMartino and Bryan Konietzko, will be back to take on the live action. THIS IS WHAT WE’VE BEEN TRAINING FOR ALL THESE YEARS. https://t.co/Pi5M1TDTZc
— NX (@NXOnNetflix) September 18, 2018
But on Wednesday, August 12, they announced that they were cutting ties from the project.
“Many of you have been asking me for updates about the Avatar live-action Netflix series,” Michael wrote in a letter on his website. “I can finally tell you that I am no longer involved with the project. In June of this year, after two years of development work, Bryan Konietzko and I made the difficult decision to leave the production.”
“When Bryan and I signed on to the project in 2018, we were hired as executive producers and showrunners. In a joint announcement for the series, Netflix said that it was committed to honoring our vision for this retelling and to supporting us on creating the series. And we expressed how excited we were for the opportunity to be at the helm. Unfortunately, things did not go as we had hoped,” he continued. “Look, things happen. Productions are challenging. Unforeseen events arise. Plans have to change. And when those things have happened at other points during my career, I try to be like an Air Nomad and adapt. I do my best to go with the flow, no matter what obstacle is put in my way. But even an Air Nomad knows when it’s time to cut their losses and move on.”
As fans know, the show originally aired from 2005 to 2008, and it followed an Avatar named Aang, who lived in a world that was divided into four nations — the Water Tribe, the Earth Kingdom, the Fire Nation and the Air Nomads. The Fire Nation wanted to take over the world, and Aang (who could control all four elements) was the only person who had enough power to stop them.
“I also sought wisdom from Stoic philosophers who were big on differentiating between what is within our control and what isn’t. I realized I couldn’t control the creative direction of the series, but I could control how I responded. So, I chose to leave the project. It was the hardest professional decision I’ve ever had to make, and certainly not one that I took lightly, but it was necessary for my happiness and creative integrity,” the showrunner added in his statement. “And who knows? Netflix’s live-action adaptation of Avatar has the potential to be good. It might turn out to be a show many of you end up enjoying. But what I can be certain about is that whatever version ends up on-screen, it will not be what Bryan and I had envisioned or intended to make.”
He concluded, “I also want to be clear that this doesn’t mean the end of my involvement in the Avatar universe. These stories and characters are important to me and the renewed interest and excitement in Avatar and Korra has been inspiring to see. Writing this letter has left me with a very heavy heart. I know many of you will be disappointed and frustrated by this news. I get it. I share your disappointment and frustration. I also recognize this creative setback is small compared to the problems we’re all facing as a society right now. Thankfully, Iroh offered some wisdom for that, too: ‘Sometimes life is like this dark tunnel. You can’t always see the light at the end of the tunnel, but if you just keep moving you will come to a better place.'”
Love J-14? Be sure to subscribe to our YouTube channel for fun, exclusive videos with your favorite stars.