Jenny Slate says Everything Everywhere All at Once directors emailed her over ‘Big Nose’ controversy
Jenny Slate has revealed that the directors of Everything Everywhere All at Once emailed her after the film was criticised for alleged antisemitism.
In the Oscar-tipped film, Slate, who is Jewish, played a character who is referred to as “Big Nose”.
After the film’s release, directors Daniel Scheinert and Daniel Kwan, known collectively as The Daniels, explained that “Big Nose” is used in Chinese culture to refer to white people generally.
They did, however, admit that the naming was a misjudgment, and amended Slate’s character’s name in the credits to “Debbie the Dog Mom”.
Speaking to The Independent as part of a new full-length interview, Slate rejected the idea that the character had been ill-intentioned, and revealed that The Daniels had sent her an email when the controversy first surfaced.
“They explained it to me,” she said. “They explained it to me right away, so I never felt it was anti-semitic.
“I’m not on social media much so [The Daniels] made me aware of it, like, ‘There’s this discussion and it sort of breaks our hearts that you would ever feel that there was something anti-semitic or that we were commenting on you, or saying that you’re not beautiful,’” she recalled.
“And I was like, ‘You guys explained this to me right away. I thought it was funny.’”
The Parks and Recreation actor added: “On my end, I was always very clear and I made the decision to play the character knowing what the name or non-name was.”
Everything Everywhere All at Once stars Michelle Yeoh as a laundromat owner who discovers the ability to traverse an infinite number of parallel dimensions.
The film is currently in contention for a number of the biggest awards at the 2023 Oscars, including Best Actress (for Yeoh), Best Supporting Actor (for Ke Huy Quan), and Best Supporting Actress (Stephanie Hsu and Jamie Lee Curtis).
It is also currently the bookmakers’ favourite to win Best Picture. See the full list of nominees here.