When Star Wars: The Last Jedi premiered in theaters on December 15, 2017, it was immediately a source of controversy among Star Wars fans everywhere. Some believed the movie took the franchise in a bold and necessary new direction that not only distanced the story from the insular confines of its previous installments, but also introduced new characters which lent diversity and equal representation to the series. Others didn't like how it wasn't what they expected it to be.
Among the film's vocal critics, a distinct source of contention was Kelly Marie Tran, who played the newly-introduced character Rose. While no one claimed her character was a perfect cinematic creation, the united trolls of the internet targeted Tran as one of the worst things to ever happen to the Star Wars saga. The online harassment became so bad that Tran eventually removed every picture from her Instagram account.
Tran is now speaking out against her harassers in a piece for the New York Times:
Tran speaks at length about growing up Asian, and how the online response to her break-out role forced her back into her worst mindsets.
Now, however, Tran is using this experience to grow...and hopefully help others grow as well.
No one should ever feel ashamed of who they are. Kelly Marie Tran isn't going anywhere.
Remember, everyone—don't let the haters get to you!