The announcement made by Azaria came earlier this year as he said he is no longer going to voice non-white characters on the animated show.
Azaria has voiced more than 1 non-white roles. He voiced Apu, an Indian immigrant, who owns a convenience store, for years but now he thinks it is not appropriate to represent someone like Apu.
The artist was met with criticism on representing a character negatively who he has no idea of and now he himself genuinely believes this could be harmful to Indian-Americans. Apu was the only Indian immigrant character on TV for many decades.
Talking about his decision, Hank Azaria shared his sentiments as he said he would not feel comfortable if this happened to a Jewish character. Azaria is a white Jewish American artist who also voiced a black police officer Lou and Mexican-American character bumblebee.
The artist said he was considering stepping off but was not sure of anything. Now, he has educated himself on racism. Azaria has been representing the character since 1990 and he believes if a non-Jewish guy presented a Jewish character for so long, he would not like that.
Harry Shearer is the second white artist who is stepping down from voicing non-white characters. Shearer voiced a black character Dr. Hibbert has been on the show for so many years.
The Simpsons has been airing for more than 3 decades in America. It is the longest scripted show which is watched in 100 countries.
Besides Hank Azaria, Mike Henry, also a white artist, will no longer voice Cleveland, The Family Guy and Consuela, the Latina maid who is in the show since season 1.
Henry took it to Twitter and said, “‘It’s been an honor to play Cleveland on Family Guy for 20 years. I love this character, but persons of color should play characters of color. Therefore, I will be stepping down from the role.'”
Are these characters still going to be the part of the animated series and who is going to voice them are the questions that are unanswered by the producer yet.