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Bird Box was an instant Netflix hit (Picture: Bird Box grab)

Bird Box has been raking in the accolades: the Netflix film broke records in its first week of release, with the streaming service revealing that 45,037,125 Netflix accounts had watched Bird Box in the first seven days.

But one thing that had viewers confused was why Parminder Nagra, a British actress from Leicester, spoke in a subtle, generic Indian accent in the film – despite the fact that she doesnt naturally possess such an affectation.

Why the fuck did they make Parminder Nagra (Indian doctor) in Bird Box have an accent? They let the white guy (murdering white guy) keep his British accent?? Shes British too (and a legend at that, Bed it like Beckham hello???) [sic], questioned Metro journalist Faima Bakar.

And it turns out Parminder herself doesnt know.

In response to the tweet, Parminder suggested: Ask the powers that be.



Oof. The ellipsis say it all.

If youve seen Parminder in any interview – or if youve seen some of the films shes been in, like Bend It Like Beckham for example, her accent is decidedly British.

What was the purpose of giving her an Indian accent?

The stellar cast of Bird Box included Sandra Bullock in the titular role of Malorie, Moonlights Trevante Rhodes, John Malkovich and Parminder as Dr Lapham.

Bird Box

Susanna Bier directed the successful Netflix films (Picture: Netflix)

Indian-American actors are often portrayed in stereotyped positions, and one of these is the nerd, which tends to manifest as a doctor or a techie (House, Big Bang Theory).

These stereotypes form part of the model minority identity and serve, accidentally or deliberately, to limit the experiences and scope of minorities. In this case, South Asians.

Another actor, Saima Huq, also tweeted about how this stereotype manifests in acting auditions.

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Its what the director wanted in the end, she shared.

I always get asked in auditions to “Do an accent.” I make sure to ask “which accent would you like?” The look on their faces make them realise 1) they dont actually know where I am from and 2) their assumption shows their prejudice.

She added: As for “casting type”, Im calling bullshit. White people get to play all sorts of roles and accents. I watched Pirates of the Caribbean in Belize w/local people who asked where all the Caribbean people were. Indian people are all over the world w/different accents.

@FaimaBakar It's what the director wanted in the end. I always get asked in auditions to "Do an accent". I make sur……

Saima Huq (@byetoallfelicia) December 26, 2018

@FaimaBakar As for "casting type", I'm calling bullshit. White people get to play all sorts of roles and accents. I……

Saima Huq (@byetoallfelicia) December 26, 2018

Another twitter user suggested were still lagging when it comes to smashing that particular stereotype.



Because we are YET to smash that stereotype which is upsetting & remarkable considering its 2018. South Asians just aint call (yet) but there are many of us trying to change that clichéd nonsense. Infuriating, they rightly said.

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