Film Backlash for Actors/Actresses Playing Certain Roles

Started by The Product, Feb 23, 2021, in Entertainment Add to Reading List

  1. The Product
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    Feb 23, 2021
    I wasn’t sure how to word the title to get the right attention here but here it is. I might be late to the party but I’ve seen two examples in the last few days:

    Scarlett Johansson: backlash that forced her to drop out of a transgender role in a movie titled “Rub & Tug” because people want to see a real transgender in that role

    Bryan Cranston: Backlash because he was an “able-bodied” actor playing a quadriplegic in “The Upside” because people wanted to see a disabled actor play the role

    Now is this blasphemy to anyone else? I don’t think I’ve seen anything so ridiculous.

    1. There is not a line of disabled actors ready to kick down the doors of Hollywood. They need to be able to sell and can’t use a no-name disabled actor for every major role you have

    2. Actors are paid to act! It’s literally their job to play someone they are not. When did it turn from an admirable and brave role to a role that they should apologize for or they will be cancelled”?

    3. Where is the line drawn? Do we have to find all gay, transgender, amputees, mentally disabled, etc. people to play these roles? When Scarlett plays black widow people aren’t up in arms she’s a superhero. When Zac Efron plays Ted Bundy people aren’t made he’s not a real serial killer.

    Please tell me I’m not the only one that finds this outrageous.
     
    Last edited: Feb 23, 2021
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  2. Ricky
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    Ricky FEEL.

    Feb 23, 2021
     
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  3. Donkey Kong Country
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    Donkey Kong Country they can't understand me, i'm talkin hieroglyphics

    Feb 23, 2021
    Casting should be more diverse/inclusive for sure but at the end of the day if someone's right for the role then they're right for the role regardless of who they are.

    I think the idea is less "you can only cast gay people as gay people" and more "perhaps a gay person could bring more emotion to this role because they're drawing from lived experiences."
     
    Mar 8, 2021
  4. Grim
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    Grim Big Time Stuntin Like My Daddy

    Feb 23, 2021
    Also from another angle, what other roles are there for a quadriplegic actor other than quadriplegic characters? Bryan Cranston can have his choice of a million roles, people with disabilities don't have that.

    Same with Trans, people can be up in arms over cis actors being turned away from trans roles - but those same people would be upset if a Trans actor played a Cis character.
     
    Mar 8, 2021
  5. The Product
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    Feb 23, 2021
    I like that perspective. That feels much more reasonable and I can get onboard with that.
     
    Mar 8, 2021
  6. Donkey Kong Country
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    Donkey Kong Country they can't understand me, i'm talkin hieroglyphics

    Feb 23, 2021
    Yeah exactly lol. People are gonna be mad no matter what. Remember when they were mad at the idea of there being a black James Bond (Idris Elba)? Like isn't the whole idea of James Bond that 007 is just a code name and not a specific person, so there's been a bunch of different Bonds?
     
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  7. reservoirGod
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    reservoirGod reckless adventurer.

    Feb 23, 2021
     
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  8. Tone Riggz
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    Tone Riggz There's No Cure For Being A C*nt

    Feb 23, 2021
     
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  9. reservoirGod
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    reservoirGod reckless adventurer.

    Feb 23, 2021
    20 years ago... there was a couple movies right in a row...

    "I am sam" and "The Other Sister" where famous actors were allowed to do the voice I would get in trouble for doing.
     
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  10. Carnifex
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    Feb 23, 2021
    Literally came to post just this as soon as I read the title, I can understand a lot of things but this is one that blows my mind
     
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  11. The Product
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    Feb 23, 2021
    I understand the premise to an extent but it’s not like Bryan or Scarlett are necessarily taking food out of the mouths of others. If we ignore orientation and disabilities and we say “X Actor is better than Y actor so we are going with X actor” that actor can play this gay, trans, etc. role just as well if not better than actor Y.

    also to my first point, there isn’t a list of these actors lining up for roles whether they are trans or cis or what have you. So although a quadriplegic might only have 1 role they can play, they are more than likely not in the acting industry in the first place because of their limited versatility.
     
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  12. The Product
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    Feb 23, 2021
    I never saw this but this is spot on and hilarious
     
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  13. Grim
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    Grim Big Time Stuntin Like My Daddy

    Feb 23, 2021
    There are plenty of trans actors lol.

    And again, there are disabled people who can only do these roles, just because they aren't well known and super abundant doesn't mean they don't exist.
     
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  14. Worm
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    Worm Big Perm Big Worm

    Feb 23, 2021
    was going to post this
     
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  15. Worm
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    Worm Big Perm Big Worm

    Feb 23, 2021
    I mean with that logic everyone should be an actor. We should all get a chance to play a role regardless of our appeal to make everything equal across the board, right? Bryan Cranston was picked for that movie because of who he is, which is a very good actor, and famous. You're not going to make money on a movie with a bunch of nobodies in it. I get what you're saying but I don't think it's logical
     
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  16. Tyler
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    Tyler Those aren't mountains

    Feb 23, 2021
    Actors should be actors but actors playing different races is just silly and unnecessary
     
    Mar 8, 2021
  17. Grim
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    Grim Big Time Stuntin Like My Daddy

    Feb 23, 2021
    There are talented disabled and trans actors, though. If none are available, sure go Cranston. I'm just saying their are vaild reasons to cast disabled people as disabled characters and trans people as trans characters
     
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  18. Tom Brady
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    Tom Brady "I'm a pretty good winner."

    Feb 23, 2021
    Good thread.

    Depends on the role. You probably shouldn’t cast Jake Gylennhall as the new Black Panther lol. Im of the mind that any actor can play mostly any role, so long as they have the skill as an actor. That’s the job of an actor. They are playing make believe for a living. None of this actually matters. Scarlett Johansson getting crucified for being cast as a trans person (? I think) a few years ago was ridiculous; so much so that she stepped down. I understand the concept of representation, but I find the cut-throat internet babies’ tantrums far more misrepresenting. I do not think just because the role is a trans character, that automatically means the actor has to be trans. I guess I kinda boil it down to this: Is it fiction? Then who cares.
     
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  19. Detroit24
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    Feb 23, 2021
    Entertainment industry is a business...the best of the best get to play these roles...producers/distributors/directors decide who they are...mainly on how much of a return they will get from their investment...

    If your a famous gay, trans actor who makes amazing movies and fans will pay to watch then you will get a job...if not unfortunately you won’t be getting these starring roles

    not everyone is cut out to be be a lead actor or professional athlete or a top selling musician...

    there are many actors who s--- at their craft yet because of politics, who their family is they get to act...but mainly because...people pay to watch their stuff...otherwise no one would produce that film...

    in the entertainment industry...I feel like the masses determine your success...if America is anti trans or anti gay...then it will be much harder for that actor to succeed...because you will have a bunch of people who don’t support that choice of his and then won’t support his movies unfortunately...that’s why your personal life should be kept private...because it can also hurt your career in this world

    I’m sure there are rappers who sing about women and they are gay behind close doors...yet they are not coming out cause it will ruin their image...

    audiences are determine how successfully these movies become...if it can make it relatable to a bunch of people or they love the actor then it will make money for the people behind the scenes...

    I think if you had an amazing disabled actor but no one knows his name and then you have Bryan crankston...everyone know who he is.....it’s hard investment millions into a project with an unknown....9/10 it is a flop financially...maybe if it gets a cult following becomes successful long term....but the big actors get big roles....that disabled actor may get his chance eventually...it takes the right team to believe in him and invest in him...which comes with a whole lot of risk

    Bryan crankston worked his way to get there...he definitely wasn’t giving the keys right away...so keep working hard and you may get your chance...a lot won’t but that’s capitalism...without hard work, and crying about your sexual preference and gender...you definetly ain’t getting that job...

    it’s all about $$$ at the end...when making these decisions
     
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  20. Ordinary Joel
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    Feb 23, 2021
    Fair warning, I'm on my soapbox below coz I think this is a chance to open up this discussion further from the disability perspective.

    Coming from a disability perspective, one pertinent thing is that my community just wants representation and for the opportunity to change the narrative. We are one of the most underrepresented, pitied, and often the forgotten community that is time and time again utilised for inspiration p--- for the majority abled-community to feel better about themselves, coz life is alright and couldn't be as bad as having a physical/mental/intellectual/acquired/nonverbal/nonvisible/neurodivergent disability right? We're regularly portrayed as burdens, as people better off dead or given away or fostered or people that need to be fixed and saved. Or we're portrayed as being amazing in spite of hardship, or patronised for living every day like the next individual but put on a pedestal coz people can't imagine how we do it. Our story is not for you to fetishise, we're humans just like you that want to live life like everyone else - only that we need extra support to be on the same equitable playing field within society and fields of work such as film/tv/media etc that is historically exclusionary, inaccessible and ableist.

    And that's why backlash occurred coz it was another example of able-Hollywood again not allowing people with disabilities a seat at the table to represent ourselves. To change the perception, to showcase our talent, to prove that we're an integral part of society that still undervalues and underestimates our contribution. You can't tell a story about a certain demographic without consultation to ensure that the messages or themes conveyed aren't in anyway harmful or that it has the potential for the population to view disabled people as not equal or put on a pedestal to fetishise. I'm sure Cranston, like many professional Hollywood actors, would've done his due diligence and ensured his role was a faithful and sincere adaptation of a quadriplegic man. But the onus is on the system, the institutions, the production companies, casting firms and actors like Cranston to utilise their influence and stature to do more to be truly inclusive and accessible for not only disabled people, but all marginalised groups to tell their story through any art form. If people have a hard time understanding why the backlash happens, keep asking those questions and we'll be here to speak. Don't get frustrated when there's nothing to be frustrated about, especially the crowd that clutch their pearls when their world is turned upside down by PC culture or whatever you wanna call it. You have the ability to turn the other cheek and ignore it. When it happens to us, we can't ignore it. We can't assimilate when the world doesn't allow us to. You have that privilege, we don't.
    That's in part a fault of the system. A disabled actor/actress can be more than a no-name should they be afforded an equitable opportunity to succeed in their field. Every actor was a nobody at some stage.
    That disabled actor won't get his chance if the system doesn't fix the issues of access and inclusion, and with your mindset every project would gear towards a mega star instead of the writers/producers/directors etc trusting their talent in delivering a story/movie/whatever worth watching.

    Bryan Cranston worked his way there coz he had access and assimilates into an industry made to support people like him to succeed. Not everyone is afforded that opportunity to work their way up brother. This "keep working hard" mantra only takes you so far until you hit roadblock issues that curtail your career/life/whatever such as inclusion, support etc etc.

    Do you honestly think it's crying and sulking about missing out on the job? It's more than that. It's just another example that frustrates those groups affected. By speaking up we're highlighting the issue and that's where change can hopefully begin to happen.
     
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