Netflix Film "To All The Boys I've Loved Before" Includes Diversity and Representation

By now pretty much every teenager and young adult has watched the Netflix original film “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before”. It seems like everyone who has seen the the movie agrees it is one of the best teen rom-coms of all time. Perhaps the film has been a great hit because of rising stars Lana Condor and Noah Centineo who play the lead characters or maybe because of the fans of the book of the same name that the movie is based on, but the movie as a whole is much more significant than the actors in it or the book it is based on. 

For so long similar teen movies such as “Another Cinderella Story”, “Mean Girls”, “Clueless” and “The Princess Diaries” have starred a leading lady who is Caucasian and lacked diversity in general. “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before” is one of the first of it’s kind, because the main character Lara Jean Covey played by Lana Condor is half Korean. While the leading lady is Asian the story doesn't focus on that or create any stereotypes, even though we get a glimpse of how important Lara Jean’s culture is to her, the story is instead just a typical teenage rom-com story. Not only do we see Asian representation in the film with Lara Jean, but we also see representation through the character’s two sisters Kitty played by Anna Cathcart and Margot played by Janel Parrish.

The author of the book the movie is based on, Jenny Han is Asian just like the character, and she's publicly spoken about how important it was for the movie’s production studio to keep the main character Asian. Han has even talked about how other production studios wanted to whitewash the main character, and she turned them down. Luckily Netflix was on board with the main character being Asian and Han finally agreed to make a movie out of her beloved book. 

Since the release of the movie Asian fans have expressed how happy they are to finally see a character they can relate to and that looks like them in a movie, and all fans alike especially those of minority backgrounds have expressed how happy they are to see diversity in a popular film. “To All The Boys I’ve Loved Before” isn't the only movie that features a diverse cast this year. In February of this year “Black Panther” was released at the movie theater and featured a completely African American cast, and this summer “Crazy Rich Asians” was released in theaters and featured a completely Asian American cast.