If the makers of The Legend of Billy Sing had used Ed Harris and Jude Law, two famous international actors, and not the director's son and Tony Bonner, would it matter less that two whites don't make a wong?
A FURORE has erupted over a new mini-series about the deadliest sniper at Gallipoli, Chinese-Australian Billy Sing, who is played by a white.
This portrayal in the The Legend of Billy Sing has been attacked by Australians of Chinese ancestry as a betrayal of their heritage, robbing them of a rare historic hero.
Director Geoff Davis has cast his son Josh in the lead role, while Sing's Chinese father is played by the veteran actor Tony Bonner, who came to prominence as a blond-haired helicopter pilot in the Skippy TV series.
Sing became celebrated as "the Assassin" at Gallipoli, where he had 201 confirmed kills, winning the Distinguished Conduct Medal, second only to the Victoria Cross. His sniping "spotter", Ion Idriess, later a successful writer, described how the Turks sent their champion sniper "Abdul the Terrible" to hunt him down, but Sing shot Abdul first.
Gotta love Davis's tell-it-walking reaction:
"A lot of people feel they own the story of Billy Sing. But they've probably got more resources than me -- if they want to tell that story, then tell it."