Space Jam: A New Legacy Actor Worried That He’ll Be Cancelled Too

x

Space Jam: A New Legacy is fast becoming more of a talking point for controversies surrounding its characters rather than anything it’s actually about. And although there are currently no plans to remove Speedy Gonzales from the movie, actor Gabriel Iglesias has now brought up the possibility.

Loony Tunes shorts from the ‘50s and ‘60s featuring Speedy typically saw him facing off with Sylvester the Cat, or other feline antagonists, winning the day not just through his super speed, but also his intellect and cunning, a heroic depiction of a Mexican character at a time when precious few examples of such existed in American media.

Although Speedy himself has always been a positive figure, the concern surrounded his friends, mice of regular speed who were often depicted as lazy drunkards that played into negative depictions of Mexicans, something the world scarcely needs more of. However, despite such concerns of stereotyping, he’s always been a popular character in Mexico, precisely because in him they saw their culture, albeit something of a caricature of it, depicted on screen. Recently, however, Iglesias tweeted his possibly tongue-in-cheek concern over getting cancelled for playing Speedy.

Iglesias, often known by his nickname “Fluffy,” rose to fame as a stand-up comic, with a lot of his material concerning race relations and the culture clash of his being Mexican born and raised in the US, although mining the situations for humor rather than offense. Here, he seems to be suggesting the risk of being cancelled for voicing a character at the center of past controversies, perhaps due to being perceived as a traitor for ignoring perpetuations of cultural insensitivity for the sake of a job.

While being overly sensitive of behalf on other peoples and cultures can sometimes go a bit too far, there’s little risk of Speedy Gonzales being cut from Space Jam: A New Legacy. Unlike Pepé Le Pew (whose removal actually came about long before the current debate surrounding him), the characterization of The Fastest Mouse in All Mexico is something to aspire to.