Controversial Simpsons character Apu Nahasapeemapetilon is no more.
The voice actor behind the controversial character, Hank Azaria, made the announcement last week.
“All we know there is I won’t be doing the voice anymore, unless there’s someway to transition it or something,” Azaria said at an event in California, according to SlashFilm.
“We all made the decision together … all feel like it’s the right thing and good about it.”
Despite Azaria making the announcement, it is yet to be officially confirmed by The Simpsons.
“What they’re going to do with the character is their call … it’s up to them and they haven’t sorted it out yet. All we’ve agreed on is I won’t do the voice anymore,” he said.
There has been mounting pressure on The Simpsons to discontinue the character in recent years.
The 2017 documentary The Problem With Apu highlighted issues of racial stereotyping that come with the character.
“Everything with Apu is like this running joke … and the running joke is that he is Indian,” the documentary quotes.
Simpsons senior producer Al Jean denied there were any plans to discontinue the character in 2018, after film producer Adi Shankar told a reporter “they’ll drop [Apu] altogether just to avoid the controversy”.
The show made reference to the controversy in a season 29 episode, where Lisa says: “Something that started decades ago and was applauded and inoffensive is now politically incorrect. What can you do?”
The Simpsons is currently in its 31st season.
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