Los Angeles (AFP)

Producers of the world-famous animated series The Simpsons announced Friday that they will no longer use white actors to dub characters from ethnic minorities.

"We are going ahead. The Simpsons will no longer have white actors to ensure the voices of non-white characters," said Fox studios in a statement sent to AFP.

The announcement will notably concern a recurring character in the series launched in 1989, Apu Nahasapeemapetilon, a grocer of Indian origin who owed his voice in American version to actor Hank Azaria. Last January, the white comedian had announced that, by mutual agreement with the production, he was abandoning this character who had also been accused for a long time of conveying racist stereotypes.

The change should also concern the character of Dr. Hibbert, a black man voiced by the white comedian Harry Shearer who also lends his voice to many other characters in the series (Mr. Burns the boss of Homer Simpson, his neighbor Ned Flanders, the main Skinner ...)

Mike Henry, a white actor who plays the black character of Cleveland Brown in "The Griffins" ("Family Guy" in original version), another series produced by Fox, for his part announced on Twitter that he "renounced this role" .

"It has been an honor to play Cleveland in Family Guy for twenty years. I love this character but people of color should play the characters of color," he said.

These announcements come after similar decisions on the part of Netflix ("Big Mouth") or Apple TV + ("Central Park"), while the American company is in full examination of conscience on its racist past and the discriminations which the mine, after the death of George Floyd, black forties, suffocated by a white policeman during his arrest.

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