Entertainment: Why shouldn't Scarlett Johansson play a transgender mobster? Actor Simon Callow weighs into the PC debate raging in film and theatre - PressFrom - United Kingdom
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EntertainmentWhy shouldn't Scarlett Johansson play a transgender mobster? Actor Simon Callow weighs into the PC debate raging in film and theatre

06:20  16 july  2019
06:20  16 july  2019 Source:   dailymail.co.uk

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Actress Scarlett Johansson said she is dropping out of a transgender role in 'Rub and Tug' after facing backlash from the LGBTQ community. Johansson had signed on to portray Dante Tex Gill, a transgender man who owns a massage parlor, in Rupert Sanders’ upcoming film Rub and Tub.

It’s been a problematic few years for Scarlett Johansson , hasn’ t it? In 2017 it was announced that instead of a Japanese actor playing a character widely But there’s another issue that Scarlett ’s controversy has brought to the surface. While cis actors are busy dipping into the very limited pool of

Why shouldn't Scarlett Johansson play a transgender mobster? Actor Simon Callow weighs into the PC debate raging in film and theatre Simon Callow attends a party celebrating ten years of The Club at The Ivy on October 5, 2018 in London, England There has been a little storm in my neck of the woods: Scarlett Johansson, one of Hollywood’s finest, has insisted that actors should be able to play any role they choose.

Heresy! I hear the sharpening of knives among our self-appointed Committee of Public Safety, who are every bit as ardent as their French Revolutionary forbears as they call for the head of Johansson, who has already been issued with a caution.

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Johansson has been criticized for accepting certain film roles. Progressives are taking aim at famed actress Scarlett Johansson for denouncing the prominent role political correctness plays in "You know, as an actor I should be allowed to play any person, or any tree, or any animal because that is

An old controversy surrounding Scarlett Johansson and the film Rub & Tug threatened to reignite this week after quotes from a recent interview began making The actress clarifies, in a statement to EW, these comments were “widely taken out of context.” Johansson was once attached to play trans man

Last year, she was forced to step down from playing a transgender mobster in a film set in 1970s Pittsburgh.

The year before that, she attracted ire for playing an Asian character in science-fiction drama Ghost In The Shell.

Why shouldn't Scarlett Johansson play a transgender mobster? Actor Simon Callow weighs into the PC debate raging in film and theatre © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited There has been a little storm in my neck of the woods: Scarlett Johansson, one of Hollywood’s finest, has insisted that actors should be able to play any role they choose Johansson is certainly in good company. Earlier this year, a disabled actor complained bitterly that the great, glorious but able-bodied Bryan Cranston had been cast as a disabled character in The Upside.

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Scarlett Johansson claims she had the right to play any role, including a tree, in response Scarlett Johansson recently gave a candid interview in As If magazine, accompanied with a colorful spread This is a phenomena that can have severe consequences for the perception of transgender people

Meaning that Scarlett Johansson shouldn ’ t play a trans man, but it would be okay if a cis man did. Which is why I don’t care if Scarlett Johansson gives the performance of her life playing Gill. I don’t care if it’s beautifully acted, emotional or even convincing.

There are many disabled actors, the argument went, who need the work, and who would have given a much more authentic performance than Cranston.

The distinguished journalist Melanie Reid, who is confined to a wheelchair, briskly dealt with the issues.

First, Cranston is a star and the film would not have been made without him or someone of equal box office heft.

Why shouldn't Scarlett Johansson play a transgender mobster? Actor Simon Callow weighs into the PC debate raging in film and theatre © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Simon Callow is pictured above. He writes: 'Over my career, I’ve played many people, most of whom I don’t resemble in the slightest: Captain Hook (I have both my hands); Tiny Tim in Dickens’ A Christmas Carol (I am 70 and sound of limb); the Virgin Mary (she was aged 16 and pregnant); and a rent boy (I was never pretty enough for that)' Second, he is a very good actor, capable of showing in a powerful way the complexities of the character and his relationship to his own disability.

And lastly, precisely because of those two reasons, in his performance, the situation of disabled people would be sympathetically highlighted and brought to the attention of people who generally prefer to turn away.

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Scarlett Johansson Faces Backlash Over Film Role As Transgender Man. Johansson 's casting was revealed on July 2 and was immediately greeted by backlash from transgender advocates and actors , demanding the role be recast with a transgender lead.

Scarlett Johansson has drawn criticism yet again for a controversial casting choice. All three of those cisgender actors have won accolades and awards for playing transgender characters on TV and in film —though Tambor, at least, has expressed regret for playing a part that could have gone to

All inarguable, and forcefully put. However, these local confrontations raise other, bigger issues.

The notion that only disabled actors are allowed to play disabled people is clearly a problematic principle which, followed through to its logical conclusion, sets an impossible requirement: only someone who has languished in a debtors’ jail can play Mr Micawber in David Copperfield; only Scottish kings — only regicidal Scottish kings, at that, those who frequent witches — can play Macbeth.

Why shouldn't Scarlett Johansson play a transgender mobster? Actor Simon Callow weighs into the PC debate raging in film and theatre I don’t want to seem frivolous: there is a serious point here. From time immemorial, disabled people have been horribly misrepresented, mocked, pilloried and demonised — not least by the theatrical profession.

But those days are long gone. It is hard to believe that there was anyone who, after seeing Daniel Day-Lewis’s depiction of physically challenged Christy Brown in My Left Foot, did not feel that the actor was celebrating Brown’s heroic struggle to make art — neither patronising, much less burlesquing, him.

Day-Lewis, needless to say, does not suffer from cerebral palsy. Instead, he is bestowed with imagination, powers of observation and extraordinary physical discipline. He also has a passion for telling the truth. In other words, he is an actor.

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SCARLETT Johansson is no stranger to accusations of cultural appropriation, having played a “whitewashed” Asian character in the movie flop Ghost in SCARLETT Johansson had a pretty good come back for those critics who declared she shouldn ’ t play a transgender man in her latest movie.

Scarlett Johansson has dropped out of Rub & Tug, amid controversy over her casting as a transgender man in the film . “I am thankful that this casting debate , albeit controversial, has sparked a larger conversation about diversity and representation in film .”

Why shouldn't Scarlett Johansson play a transgender mobster? Actor Simon Callow weighs into the PC debate raging in film and theatre © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited Earlier this year, a disabled actor complained bitterly that the great, glorious but able-bodied Bryan Cranston (above) had been cast as a disabled character in The Upside. There are many disabled actors, the argument went, who need the work, and who would have given a much more authentic performance than Cranston Over my career, I’ve played many people, most of whom I don’t resemble in the slightest: Captain Hook (I have both my hands); Tiny Tim in Dickens’ A Christmas Carol (I am 70 and sound of limb); the Virgin Mary (she was aged 16 and pregnant); and a rent boy (I was never pretty enough for that).

Indeed, I’m not the only actor who has had to jump out of their skin. Al Pacino, star of The Godfather, isn’t a Mafioso; Morgan Freeman, whose performance in The Shawshank Redemption was nominated for an Oscar, isn’t an escaped convict; and, as far as I’m aware, Anthony ‘Hannibal Lecter’ Hopkins isn’t a cannibal.

Yet today, actors have to think twice before they take on a role. What is acting? ‘Dressing up for mummy and daddy,’ said my late friend and Bafta-winning colleague Denholm Elliott.

He wasn’t wrong, but it’s only part of the story. As actors, we give ourselves over to other lives. We stop being ourselves and start to think the thoughts of other human beings.

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Transgender representation in Hollywood scored a huge victory last week when Scarlett Naysayers are quick to point out there are no trans actors famous enough to carry a movie the way If the film fizzles out, it would support the notion that trans movies can only get made with an A-lister attached.

Scarlett Johansson has dropped out of 'Rub & Tug,' the movie that would have seen her play a real-life transgender man. The Hollywood Reporter was unable to confirm the statement, which references cisgender actors that have previously played award-winning trans roles.

It takes skill and practice to do this sensitively.

Why shouldn't Scarlett Johansson play a transgender mobster? Actor Simon Callow weighs into the PC debate raging in film and theatre © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited As actors, we give ourselves over to other lives. We stop being ourselves and start to think the thoughts of other human beings. Actor Anthony Hopkins is pictured above in Silence Of The Lambs Even personality actors show us how one kind of human behaves in a thousand fascinating ways — while character actors like myself morph from one person to another.

The crucial thing is empathy: feeling yourself drop into someone else’s life. The actor asks: what does it feel like to be x, y or z? That calls for serious observation. And imagination.

When asked by German playwright Bertolt Brecht why he acted, Academy Award winner Charles Laughton answered: ‘Because I think I can show people what they’re like.’

Laughton wasn’t a sociologist or a psychiatrist. He was an actor; someone who converts their observations and experiences into a credible and — most importantly — memorable human being.

Why shouldn't Scarlett Johansson play a transgender mobster? Actor Simon Callow weighs into the PC debate raging in film and theatre It is the connection between the actor and the character that excites an audience.

Using his or her gifts of distillation, concentration and verbal brilliance, an actor manages to create something that lodges itself in your brain.

The same thing happens to painters when they create a masterpiece. They take what they have observed and, using their own language of paint, reinvent and reorder it into something both true and reimagined.

That magic zone is a place of limitless freedom; in it, actors paint with their bodies, their faces and their voices.

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Scarlett Johansson dropped out of the film 'Rub & Tug' following a backlash over the actress' controversial casting in a transgender role. “While I would have loved the opportunity to bring Dante’s story and transition to life, I understand why many feel he should be portrayed by a

Scarlett Johansson bows out of trans drama Rub & Tug after controversy. New, 117 comments. By offering up other examples of cisgender actors who have played trans individuals, Johansson Trans representation in film is especially low: GLAAD’s 2017 Studio Responsibility Index noted zero

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Actors represent the human race. And to do it justice, it is vital that all kinds of human beings, of every size and shape, of every skin colour and every gender, and every kind of physical challenge, should be able — so long as they learn their craft — to play as many different roles as possible.

Nobody who has talent should be kept out of the acting profession. And nobody, even including white, middle-class males, should be prevented from playing any part.

Seeing women play Shakespearean soldiers has been a revelation. Seeing black actors playing preening dandies in Restoration comedies has helped rediscover the wit of the 17th century.

And seeing disabled actors playing dictators and lovers has been illuminating and often full of unexpected poetry.

Why shouldn't Scarlett Johansson play a transgender mobster? Actor Simon Callow weighs into the PC debate raging in film and theatre © Provided by Associated Newspapers Limited From time immemorial, disabled people have been horribly misrepresented, mocked, pilloried and demonised — not least by the theatrical profession. But those days are long gone. A stock image is used above

As a gay man, I have been impressed and moved by non-gay actors — such as Timothée Chalamet in Call Me By Your Name or Jake Gyllenhaal in Brokeback Mountain — playing men loving other men, helping to cancel out Hollywood’s grim record of vicious homophobic caricature.

‘What if …?’ is an actor’s first question. ‘What if I were gay? Black? Transgender? Short, tall, beautiful?’ The imaginative leap is what makes the performance: it is the essence of the art.

In every sphere, the world as we know it or think we know it is in uproar. From politics to culture, everything is being questioned, stood on its head, taken apart.

In my own little world — the world of the theatre, of movies, of opera — the Earth shakes beneath our feet on a daily basis.

Why shouldn't Scarlett Johansson play a transgender mobster? Actor Simon Callow weighs into the PC debate raging in film and theatre If that sounds melodramatic, well — surprise, surprise — I’m an actor.

Ours is a profession that exists to reflect the chaos of life, and it would be odd if our discipline were not constantly in flux.

Throughout history, dramatists have always been at the forefront of change.

We need to rethink our profession, too. Just as long as it doesn’t get in the way of one thing: our ability to act.

And, frankly, I feel cheated that I have been prevented from seeing Miss Johansson’s transgender gangster. Bring it on, I say.

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