Why Is Apu Not On ‘The Simpsons’?

Why is Apu not on The Simpsons?

Apu Nahasapeemapetilon was an iconic character on The Simpsons, but he’s now missing and fans want to know why he was removed. 

Anybody who has ever watched The Simpsons will know that Apu is one of the show’s best-loved characters.

The owner of Kwik-E-Mart first showed up on the programme in 1990 and he’s made many appearances since. Until now. Let’s find out why…

Apu Voiceover Hank Azaria Sorry For Playing ‘The Simpsons’ Character

Hank Azaria no longer voices Apu in The Simpsons due to his guilt over racial stereotyping.
Hank Azaria no longer voices Apu in The Simpsons due to his remorse over racial stereotyping. Credit: TCFFC.

Why Is Apu Not On The Simpsons?

The reason Apu is not on The Simpsons is that the voice actor who plays him, Hank Azaria, stepped down from the show.

Why did Hank Azaria step down from The Simpsons?

Hank Azaria stepped down because he felt guilty for perpetuating negative stereotypes about Indian people.

While appearing on a recent episode of the podcast Armchair Expert, he said he wanted to ‘go around to every single Indian person in this country and personally apologise’. 

He said: “I was talking to the Indian kids there because I wanted to get their input.

“A 17-year-old boy…he’s never even seen The Simpsons but knows what Apu means. It’s practically a slur at this point. All he knows is that is how his people are thought of, and represented, to many people in this country.”

Hank Azaria interviews on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert
Hank Azaria interviews on The Late Show with Stephen Colbert. Credit: The Late Show with Stephen Colbert

What has Matt Groening, The Creator of The Simpsons, said about Apu? 

Matt Groening confirmed in an interview with USA Today that he wants to bring the character back in a new way. However, nothing has been set in stone. 

He said: “We’ve got plans for Apu, but we have to see if we can make the stories work.”

When asked if he’s lined up a new actor to voice him, he replied: “No. We’re working on something kind of ambitious. That’s all I can say.”

What does Apu mean?

Apu is of Indian origin and means Pure, Virtuous, Divine.

It is a name often given to boys.

Featured Image Credit: TCFFC/The Late Show with Stephen Colbert & Disney

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Written by Aimee Walker

Aimee is a senior content editor at IGV who specialises in finding the best original stories, trending topics and entertainment news. She graduated from Birmingham City University with a degree in Media and Communications.