Mindy Kaling couldn’t be bothered by what critics have to say about her upcoming HBO Max animated Scooby-Doo spinoff “Velma.”
During the Warner Bros. Discovery Upfront presentation on Wednesday, Kaling, an executive producer on the show, gave viewers a first look at the series before addressing some of the backlash that followed news that the titular character would be reimagined as a brown woman.
"Hopefully, you noticed my Velma is South Asian," she said to the audience. "If people freak out about that, I don't care."
She continued: "Nobody ever complained about a talking dog solving mysteries so I don’t think they’ll be upset over a brown Velma."
The series follows the origin story of Velma Dinkley, the brains of the Mystery Incorporated gang famously clad in her bright orange turtleneck and skirt ensemble. She and the other three members of the gang were traditionally depicted as white in the animated shows and live-action adaptations.
Some criticized the South Asian Velma as perpetuating the Asian nerd stereotype, while others opposed deviating from the character being white.
Last year, Kaling addressed the controversy on NBC's "Late Night With Seth Meyers,” noting how she would have to “be careful” discussing the character.
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“People were not happy,” she said. “There was a lot of, like, ‘So not Velma!’ Those kind of tweets. ‘Not the classic Velma that I’m always thinking about.'”
"She's such a great character, she's so smart and I just couldn't understand how people couldn't imagine a really smart, nerdy girl with terrible eyesight who loved to solve mysteries could not be Indian," Kaling countered.
Feature image via Variety
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