“Hats off to you Firass Dirani, for a call to stop commercial network producers casting only white actors. Only on Australian screens. Shame! As someone who lost his job on H&A because they couldnt write two ethnics that weren’t together, I’d like a chance to ply my trade freely. I think commercial TV should take a leaf out of children’s TV in this country. We are a rainbow nation in kids TV. No tokens here.”
Naturally, Channel 7 denies his contract ending had anything to do with racism.
So here’s the thing for me: racism could very well be a big and real issue within Australian TV, but it just comes across to me as sour grapes when you’ve just finished working on a show after being on there for 18 months (a decent length of time).
I can’t remember the last time I read a nice comment about his character Elijah: people seem to overwhelmingly find him a pointless and annoying characte. No-one seems to be cheering for him to get together with Leah either. If you polled people who they most wanted to kick off the show, Elijah would be right up there.
Fight racism, yes, but doing it just after you’ve finished working on a show where your character got written out and you come across bitter at that doesn’t feel right to me. It also doesn’t really help engage with the audience who weren’t a fan of your character!