in ,

Political correctness on the silver screen

When censorship becomes ridiculous.

More and more people are using the term ‘whitewashing’ to describe the practice of casting white
actors as non-white characters. Initially the criticism made sense. For example, Othello really
should be a black actor not some bloke in dark face especially nowadays when there is an
excess of highly-gifted black actors.

Despite his brilliance, I was aghast years ago watching Sir Lawrence Olivier portray the bard’s character on film. It was a travesty and just plain wrong on so many levels. But there are many cases when it simply doesn’t matter what the ethnicity of the actor is because it is not relevant. Case in point… If you follow news about the entertainment industry or are simply a film buff you probably ran
across the following story recently:

“British actor Ed Skrein has pulled out of a role in the upcoming Hellboy reboot after a backlash
because he was cast as a character of Asian heritage.” This is courtesy of BBC. Just think about that for a minute. An actor has decided not to portray a character because he is not of the same ethnic heritage as a comic-book character. This is a slippery PC slope. Very slippery.

For if we are consistent in our belief (and logic) then it only follows that the role of Hamlet should never again be portrayed by a British actor because Hamlet was Danish. All of the historical plays and movies about the Romans must have Italians and not Shakespearean actors from Britain. Caesar must be Italian. Romeo and Juliet also. Nothing against Italian actors, but shouldn’t directors choose actors based upon talent and not ethnicity if the ethnicity is not an obvious requirement for the story?
This is PC overreach and it borders on outright lunacy.

Let’s be absolutely clear…

We are not talking about real-life people being portrayed here. The film Hellboy is based on a
fictional superhero created by writer-artist Mike Mignola. The characters in the film are simply
comic- book figures! Are we to ban further Star Trek re-makes until someone who is actually
half human and half Vulcan can be found to play the part of Spock?

Likewise no further movies about Superman should be produced until and when contact is made
with an alien civilization for as everyone knows “Clark Kent” was not a human being, but a
visitor from far away in the cosmos. Hopefully aliens will have developed their own civilization to the point where acting is an integral and advanced part of their culture.

Shall we ride this PC train all the way? Then the next time a film is made about Jesus Christ – as
a cultured man with modern sensibilities – I demand the real thing – the son of God Himself.
And when miracles are performed the studios won’t need any special effects. Think of the
money they’ll save.

Liked it? Take a second to support The Duran on Patreon!

Report

What do you think?

Leave a Reply

avatar
  Subscribe  
Notify of
Helga Fellay
Guest
Helga Fellay

what a silly article. The author seems to want to continue racism in Hollywood which runs rampant. The roles to play Black characters should go to Black actors, and the roles of Asian characters should go to Asian actors, and so forth. This is not over the top political correctness, it simply is the right thing to do. There are more than plenty of examples of ridiculous political correctness the author could have chosen, but this is not one of them.

Rastislav Veľká Morava
Member
Rastislav Veľká Morava

Why doesn’t this work the other way where you have white characters going to black actors, like in the many Marvel movies?

Why the double standard?

Helga Fellay
Guest
Helga Fellay

Actually there are a few enlightened and creative thinkers in Hollywood who have given roles written for men to women (if I recall correctly, Demi Moore’s role in A Few Good Men was actually written for a man). If it hasn’t happened yet, I am sure that eventually it will happen that a white character, unless race is of the essence for the plot, will be played by men of another ethnicity. Keep in mind that Hollywood is not leading in the Zeitgeist, and is lagging way behind the prevailing culture when it comes to enlightenment and creativity. Hollywood is… Read more »

Rastislav Veľká Morava
Member
Rastislav Veľká Morava

It has happened to predominately and long established Caucasian characters in the Marvel Comics, now in the Marvel Movies, such as Col. Nick Fury, The Kingpin, Ned Leeds, etc.

And now it is not proper for a Caucasian to play an Asian American?

I wonder how you do not see the hypocrisy (and therefore an alternate agenda) in these actions.

Helga Fellay
Guest
Helga Fellay

I have never read comics in my life and have no idea to what you are referring. Highly talented Asian actors are sitting around unemployed in Hollywood, and when the very rare opportunity of playing an Asian character comes along, that character should be played by one of the many underemployed or unemployed Asian actors. That’s the right thing to do. Your own personal sentimental fantasy attachments of white guys playing Asians in comics are your own personal issues – adjustments you have to make – grow up and deal with it!

Rastislav Veľká Morava
Member
Rastislav Veľká Morava

I listed the names, that you can simply google, instead of having no idea to what I am referring to.

According to you, proving hypocrisy by pointing out specific double standards is an adjustment that I need to make, by growing up and dealing with it.

Hmm? I didn’t know that hypocrisy by employing double standards can be cured that way? Thank you for that:)

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

A movie isn’t a piece of socially responsible equal rights activity. It’s to make money in the first instance, and to mind manipulate via CIA and Pentagon operatives, in the second. There should be total freedom to cast whomever the director wants. If he wants to cast a blackened white man to play a leader of black uprising in Hawaii, he should be able to. The fact that everyone will laugh at the movie, give it a thumbs down, and he’ll lose money and status will be his just reward!!! And if he doesn’t, and it’s a success, well, it… Read more »

Seán Murphy
Guest
Seán Murphy

I always laugh when I see obviously Caucasian actors playing “Indians” in Western movies. Most of these old Westerns, up until the sixties, featured white actors in such roles. One badly miscast was Burt Lancaster as an “Indian Chief”. And can anyone forget John Wayne as the Roman centurion, with his drawling American accent saying, “He was truly the son of gad”. Before any pedant attacks me, I know this latter was not a Western.

Manimal
Guest
Manimal

And John Wayne in “The conqueror”? 🙂

Daisy Adler
Guest
Daisy Adler

Why?
Marlon Brando playing a Japanese in “The Teahouse of the August Moon” was quite a performance. Couldn’t recognize him almost to the movie’s end.comment imagecomment image

Isabella Jones
Guest
Isabella Jones

We have to remember that much of Hollywood casting is done purely with an eye to the box office. Simply put, if you can get Tom Cruise – who will pull in a huge audience, thus increase your ratings and takings – why would you give his part to someone who is, yes, more “racially” appropriate, but perhaps lacking his high name and presence. Even perhaps a racially appropriate someone never heard of – knowing it will lose you audience appeal and thus money?? Hollywood is all about CIA and Pentagon propaganda, and money, and mind manipulation. Racism has nothing… Read more »

Daisy Adler
Guest
Daisy Adler

“Othello really should be a black actor” Why? William Shakespeare’s character Othello is described as “Moor”. The Moors or Berbers were the ancient population of the actual Morocco, who were not black. Peter Ackroyd, author of Shakespeare’ Biography, wrote, “It is a mistake to consider Othello to be of African or West Indian origin. He was of Moorish stock, olive-skinned, and Shakespeare portrays him as ‘black’ or “swarthy” for the purposes of theatrical emphasis and symbolism.” It is believed that the ambassador ben Messaoud of the Moroccan king at the court of Queen Elisabeth I of England, inspired the character… Read more »

Helga Fellay
Guest
Helga Fellay

You are absolutely correct. Othello was a North African, Arab or Berber, of olive complexion, and probably very handsome. As the English of Shakespeare’s time favored fair skin over darker tones, they would have considered him less handsome. But in order for the plot to make sense, Othello had to be perceived as ugly, so they decided to make him coal black. Othello doubted Desdemona’s love for him because how could such a beautiful woman love him, the ugly Moor? The concept of racism did not as yet exist at that time. That’s why the play Othello is somewhat problematic… Read more »

Daisy Adler
Guest
Daisy Adler

I don’ recall from Shakespeare’s play that Othello was described as ugly. On the contrary, as a very manly, proud and victorious general, fighting for the glory of Venice. From my childhood favorite book, ‘Tales from Shakespeare’, by Charles and Mary Lamb: “the noble Moor wanted nothing which might recommend him to the affections of the greatest lady. He was a soldier, and a brave one; and by his conduct in bloody wars against the Turks, had risen to the rank of general in the Venetian service, and was esteemed and trusted by the state.” Her father loved me; oft… Read more »

Helga Fellay
Guest
Helga Fellay

Of course Othello was not described as “ugly.” I think he was described as dark and swarthy, which translates to the audience of the time as not attractive. The entire plot makes no sense if you can’t accept that basic premise. Othello would never had doubted his devoted and loving wife unless he had accepted that he, a dark and swarthy man, could never really be loved by that beautiful woman. Don’t you get that?

Odidi
Guest
Odidi

LOL this buffoonery continues I am in stitches! You all think you are so intellectual but this says intellectually challenged,

englishvinal
Guest
englishvinal

Go away! You are ill educated and arrogant…what a disgusting combination.
Take a hike, read a book, educate yourself.

Edmund burke326
Guest
Edmund burke326

The original inhabitants of northern Africa looked as the Tawergha and other native tribes today in Libya and throughout the north of Africa, they were not Arabs (who are invaders to Africa). Berbers and other tribes, after the invasions by the Arabs, either moved down to eastern Africa (though not entirely) or were wiped out or enslaved. The west has always supported the narrative that northern Africa is Arab territory. Theresa May can’t get enough Arab money. The West Indies is a colonial creation populated by people of various ethnicities including African, British, European and Asian on numerous islands, it’s… Read more »

Daisy Adler
Guest
Daisy Adler

Morocco Ambassador to Great Britain in the 17th century:comment image

Odidi
Guest
Odidi

No they were not. You are imaging your entire ignorant racist rant. Why people like you even dare to humiliate yourself by actually making it public is beyond me. The Duran is not a space for this kind of juvenile stupidity. Use the internet for more than propagating your hate and actually research and learn something besides affirming duplicitous inferiority complex. Clearly Africans are only the colour black to you. LOL what buffoonery, I’d be embarrassed

englishvinal
Guest
englishvinal

Good heavens Odidi… You wouldn’t have some kind of “dark skin” would you?…’
Read some history just for the fun of it…Daisy is correct, regarding Shakespeare writing about Othello…. You have just made a racist fool of yourself!

Punisher 1
Guest
Punisher 1

They did something like that in the Hollow Crown. Where they had black actors play a Queen of England. And a high noble warrior relative of a King.They did a great job in acting the parts.No complaints about that. But it was so historically inaccurate that it badly deflected from those parts in the movie. But there is another point involved. That is done for PC reasons involving European or European American people. It would never be turned around. Can anyone imagine the horror and fury unleashed if a studio was to announce a movie on the life of Mandela… Read more »

Aleksandar Tomić
Guest
Aleksandar Tomić

Alright then, i want for Idris Elba to stop playing Heimdall in MCU.

Christinamellis
Guest
Christinamellis

Google is paying 97$ per hour! Work for few hours and have longer with friends & family!!!
On tuesday I got a great new Land Rover Range Rover from having earned $8752 this last four weeks.. Its the most-financialy rewarding I’ve had.. It sounds unbelievable but you wont forgive yourself if you don’t check it
>>>http://GoogleFinancialJobsCash320TopValue/GetPay$97/Hour………

Manimal
Guest
Manimal

Why? Just a Norse guy who spent too much time in the sun… 😉

Rastislav Veľká Morava
Member
Rastislav Veľká Morava

Don’t you dare joke about it:) Those indoctrinated the West take things literally and do not seem to understand the concept of irony.

Manimal
Guest
Manimal

Good :-).
I like them pissed off.

Le Ruse
Guest
Le Ruse

Political correctness, is virus, that’s killing the mankind &… Womankind as well, of course ??..comment image

Odidi
Guest
Odidi

This article/opinion is amateurish and juvenile. The Duran can and does do so much better than this waste of space. There are far too many Asian actors were overlooked for the role and smacks of laziness, ignorance just bigotry. Don’t claim authenticity and professional standards if every role is gonna be played by a Caucasian Anglo-Saxon including female roles! Yes its a whitewash and to Le Ruse. I’d like to see the day you conceive and give birth to life. Womankind is the only reason there is mankind. The Duran can do so much better than this please!

Rastislav Veľká Morava
Member
Rastislav Veľká Morava

The Duran are doing better since inception, and continue to do so.

Odidi
Guest
Odidi

Thats is what I said in my first dentence
But this article is racist buffoonery, in my opinion, an error.Mistakes happen even to the. Best intentioned. Ye of blind faith “Question More”

Rastislav Veľká Morava
Member
Rastislav Veľká Morava

Uhh, no.

englishvinal
Guest
englishvinal

Go away!

Odidi
Guest
Odidi

Not a chance!
The Duran is of a better pedigree than this and I am a loyal follower who does not take to juvenile petulance as expressed by you. You stand down!

Crimes are crimes committed by ‘enemies’ not by the ‘West’

Hillary Clinton goes on 15 city tour. Seats selling for $1,200