Donny Yen Only Agreed to do Rogue One if Lucasfilm Made His Character Less Racist

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It goes without saying that Donny Yen's first and only outing in the Star Wars franchise left a lasting impression on fans. The martial arts icon, who played Chirrut Imwe in 2016's Rogue One: A Star Wars Story was among the film's biggest highlights but did you know that the blind warrior monk who's a true believer of the Force was nearly presented in a more stereotypical manner?

Credit: Lucasfilm

According to Yen, he had major issues with how Chirrut was originally written in Rogue One and even went as far as approaching the film's creative team. Surprisingly enough, they agreed to the Hong Kong actor's request and completely changed the character's direction.

Speaking with GQ Magazine (via Variety) to talk about his Rogue One experience as well as Hollywood's Asian stereotyping, Yen said: "One thing I pointed out is he was a stereotype. Typical master. Doesn’t smile". The outlet also mentioned how the actor "suggested making the character blind, and gave him a sense of humor, improvising jokes on the set — and, in turn, turning an otherwise straight cliché into the soul of the movie."

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Speaking of Chirrut Imwe, Yen stated in an interview last year that he's down to returning to a galaxy far, far away. Potentially in the upcoming season of Andor. He told Looper: "Well, I would definitely consider it. I had a great time shooting Rogue One, and I guess people like my character. It really depends, you don't know what they're thinking. I leave it up to Disney to sort it out. We'll see. I believe in destiny. A lot of times, what brings people together in one film, it's all about timing and destiny."

Rogue One: A Star Wars Story is available to stream on Disney+. Meanwhile, the second season of Andor is currently in production.