Oooh boy, do I love to stir up a hornet’s nest!
As you will recall, last month I published an item on an announced boycott against Ridley Scott's upcoming mega epic "Exodus: Gods and Kings," and the lack of people of color in the film's cast (read it HERE).
I don’t want to say that I was the cause of it all (though I like to think so), but after my piece was published and circulated online, several similar articles appeared all over the internet, and elsewhere, all addressing the casting controversy, which was the cause of many much-heated discussions. You only have take a look at the comments in that my piece to see for yourselves.
So, of course, it was only a matter of time before someone involved with the actual film, addressed the controversy. And that person was co-star Joel Edgerton, who plays the role of Rhamses in the film.
When asked about the casting controversy, Edgerton, in an interview yesterday on Australian television, said that he was “sensitive to it," adding, "I do understand and empathize with that position (but)... it's not my job to make those decisions... I got asked to do a job, and it would have been very hard to say no to that job."
Now before you go hard on him, let’s face it. He’s an actor, and not necessarily someone - when you get right down to it - who is paid to challenge the status quo, but instead, to take orders, as it were. Therefore, when presented with a major role in a huge $200 million movie, to be directed by one of the most important filmmakers of the past 3 decades, I don’t think Edgerton would have said: "You know that's great; I really appreciate it. But give the role to an actor of color instead, who's deserving of the part."
Of course not.
And actually Edgerton really isn’t the person to address this issue. The job goes to Ridley Scott, the filmmaker behind the project, as well as the producers of the film, who made the final decisions; But they have been silent so far.
However, if they do speak up on the issue, we’ll be sure to let you know.