this is my first post, and i’m sure i’m already going all wrong about it. but since arnab forced me to use the password “italysucks” for my first login, i’m trying to mess up his site as much as i can.
i have nothing to say on gay actors, but i thought i’d bring the debate that’s being conducted under michael’s post on steven spielberg to a location where people can find it (why do i know that suddenly no one will have absolutely anything more to say on the subject?).
i would like, though, to say something more on the topic of identity specific actors. the first thing i want to say is screw current theories of performance. the second thing i want to say is that, as reynolds says, it matters very little whether actors can represent characters whose identity is racially/ethnically different from their own (i’m intentionally leaving out class and sexuality — and gender doesn’t seem to be a problem nowadays!), when foreign actors and actors of color have a hard time getting jobs in high-paying hollywood. not to mention that using white and/or american actors to play all sorts of non-white non-american roles does nothing to foster in the audience a true appreciation of diversity. i cannot tell you how bummed i was that the role of paul rusesabagina in the objectionable hotel rwanda was played by don cheadle. how are we going to make americans believe that they are not the only ones in the world who are worth anything if we do not allow foreigners to appear on our screens?
pride and prejudice: i haven’t seen it and don’t plan to either, but it just about broke my heart when, following the release of the excellent bend it like beckham, everyone said that the new star being born was, not the gorgeous and talented parminder nagra, but the insipid keira knightley. now, sorry keira, but do we need another pretty white teenage face? in the meantime parminder has landed only shitty roles.
isn’t there a story out there about a young woman who doesn’t look white waiting to be turned into a good movie? and exactly how many times does p&p need to be remade?