This is the Remix: The Reboot of Roots Part II

Young LeVar Burton as the original Kunta Kiente

As I have stated in the previous post I am not pleased about the reboot of miniseries "Roots." I thought it was necessary for me to explain why I am opposed to this reboot. Karu F. Daniels author of " Roots Reboot: The Reason Original Kunta Kiente Actor LeVar Burton Took Part" discusses what influenced the actor's decision to not only support the reboot but also become one of the executive producers. LeVar Burton said he had a conversation with Mark Wolper, co-producer of the original miniseries. Wolper showed the original miniseries to his children and they did not appreciate it. LeVar Burton stated the following. " They watched it but they said, "You know what dad, its dated and its old and the makeup is terrible," and they were right," Burton said.  "And they said, "You know it's kind of like your generation's music. I get why it's important and important to you but it really doesn't speak to me." Here is an image of producer Mark Wolper below.

Mark Wolper

Leslie Uggams as Kizzy Kiente being sold off to another plantation

The article also shared insight from actress Leslie Uggams. Uggams played the role of Kizzy Kiente Reynolds, in the original miniseries. She also admitted to having mixed feelings about the reboot at first.

"Kizzy is such a part of me," Emmy and Tony Winner explained. "So you're very protective and that doesn't mean it can't be done again."  "I'm sure it's going to be wonderful, so you'll have two versions," Uggams, 73, continued. I'm sure they are to have some wonderful actors and actresses, but we are the senior ones."

Malachi Kirby as Kunta Kiente and Emayatzy Corinealdi as Belle in the reboot version of Roots
Toni's Thoughts: As I have said once before I believe this is an insult to the work of the original cast members. After reading the comments made by Mark Wolper's children I am still pissed off. Slavery was not a glamorous experience so it was not supposed to be aesthetically pleasing. The statements made by Wolper's children  prove that many people in my generation and the youth behind me do not honor and have a concept of people who established foundations for them in arts and culture. Also their statements regarding music reveals that many young people have been programmed to listen to repetitive corporate chant noise which is what we now call "music." Personally I believe it was the responsibility of Mark Wolper to explain the miniseries to them or have them study the subject. I strongly disagree with the fact that LeVar Burton has agreed and justified their assertions. I only say this because it seems as though this reboot was made to appease and appeal to a younger audience in this case a young white audience. I believe that disrespects the legacy of the original miniseries. LeVar Burton has argued that racism is still an issue in America and that being a black man is still dangerous. I agree with those assertions. Also maybe LeVar Burton does have good intentions and maybe he has financial needs to meet. I don't know but I disagree with the reboot. But I do not believe this reboot was necessary sometimes you should leave things as they are.  I guess one positive thing is that a younger generation could potentially see and understand a glimpse of the African enslavement experience in America.  I cannot change the opinions of others and I will not attempt to do so but that is my two cents.

Here is the link to the article from LeVar Burton's interview with Good Morning America


Popular Posts