7

Daily reminder that the Bible is not a story about white people.

Images starting from the top:

1) Egyptian wall painting of Asiatic traders (from approximately the same time and place as the Biblical Patriarchs) visiting Egypt, c. 1890 B.C.

2) Screencap of Queen Tuya from the Dreamworks film The Prince of Egypt, 1998.

3) Leah was Tender-Eyed, painting by Abel Pann, 1935.

4) Illustration by Avi Katz from the book King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba, 1997.*

5) Rebekah by Abel Pann, c. 1935.

6) Facial reconstruction of what the historical Jesus might have looked like, made by forensic anthropologist Richard Neave, from the BBC series Son of God, 2001.

7) Screencap of Tzipporah, Aaron, Moses and Miriam from The Prince of Egypt, 1998.

*Solomon’s looking a little too white there, I know, but Makeda (the Queen of Sheba) looks great, and the background characters are on the whole identifiably PoC, too.

So, I was in the middle of searching for how long Keke Palmer will be on Broadway as Cinderella. Gotta get my ticket. I scrolled down and saw this first comment: 

image

image

The reach with this one disneyfied ass tale. They, however, have no problem whitewashing different races and ethnicities and see our disdain as sensitive and “reverse racist.” Case in point: Exodus - God and Kings, the new British-American biblical movie set in Egypt, that has caused uproar and boycotts: 

image

image

Apparently these are acceptable…

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

image

Lemme not go over the post limit. This is just a handful that scratch the surface. 

2

Did Ridley Scott’s “Exodus” movie give the Sphinx a white/European makeover?

The backlash against Ridley Scott’s Exodus is gathering momentum. After Noah’s mixed reception earlier this year, more and more people are sick of seeing movies with “whitewashed” casts: White actors representing historical figures who almost certainly were not white.

The latest accusation of Exodus whitewashing relates to someone who technically isn’t even a character: the Sphinx.

The likeliest explanation is that the sculpture in this picture is not the Sphinx, but is in fact a statue of Ramses. This means that it would have been based on actor Joel Edgerton’s face. 

Unfortunately, this just makes the whitewashed casting even more blatant, because real statues of Ramses II simply do not look like that. So while Exodus may not have made a “white version” of the Sphinx, Egyptian culture is still being erased and rewritten to fit in with the film’s predominantly white cast of actors.

[READ MORE]

But Tiger Lily being a problematic character isn’t an excuse to cast a non-Native American actress. Rather, it’s the same as it was with The Lone Ranger: The key to bringing a racial caricature forward to the modern day isn’t to disregard that person’s race but to change the character so they’re not a racial caricature. Jesus Christ. It’s not that hard. There’s something to be said for “loyalty to source material,” but *early 1900s racism is not one of the things you need to keep.*

"WHITEWASH" a Documentary On The Black Experience In Surfing

Whitewash explores the African-American experience and race in surfing. It touches on some pertinent issues about how the history of surfing was detached from it’s indigenous Hawaiian origins and largely regarded as having it’s founding or “discovery” with European settlers. It also focuses on the issues of segregation and racism at beaches in California and of how the belief that “black people can’t swim” was passed down from generation to generation. 

I’m so glad this documentary exists. There is also great evidence of sea culture in West Africa which after the slave trade forced the people to move inland. Surfing has never been a white-trait. 

If you’ve seen Darren Aronofsky’s Noah, you may have noticed something a little weird about the semi-Biblical, semi-apocalyptic cast of the movie: they’re all white. Even the extras.

In an interview with The Higher Calling, Noah screenwriter Ari Handel spoke about the reasoning behind the lack of racial diversity in the cast.

“From the beginning, we were concerned about casting, the issue of race. What we realized is that this story is functioning at the level of myth, and as a mythical story, the race of the individuals doesn’t matter. They’re supposed to be stand-ins for all people. Either you end up with a Bennetton ad or the crew of the Starship Enterprise. You either try to put everything in there, which just calls attention to it, or you just say, ‘Let’s make that not a factor, because we’re trying to deal with everyman.’ Looking at this story through that kind of lens is the same as saying, ‘Would the ark float and is it big enough to get all the species in there?’ That’s irrelevant to the questions because the questions are operating on a different plane than that; they’re operating on the mythical plane.”

In summary, white people are stand-ins “for all people,” and no other race could possibly qualify for “everyman” status. Ari Handel’s reasoning is that the only way to dispense with the issue of racism is to remove everyone who isn’t white. Asking what happened to all the other races is akin to nitpicking about whether the arc would float or not. It’s just silly, OK? “The race of individuals doesn’t matter,” which is why they made absolutely sure that all of those individuals were white. Or something.

Unintentionally, Handel managed to illustrate everything that’s wrong with the ongoing attitude towards casting actors of color in major Hollywood movies. White people are the norm, and everyone else is just a distraction. God forbid anyone attempt to be as diverse as the cast of the Star Trek, which debuted in 1966 and included a grand total of two non-white characters.

[READ MORE]

[image description: Series of photos with the label, “Which of these does not belong?” at the top. There are 5 images of ancient Egyptian art depicting ancient Egyptians clearly as a dark brown and black skinned people with broad features. There is an additional still image from Michael Jackson’s “Remember the Time” Video featuring Eddie Murphy and Iman as pharaoh and his queen. The last image is of white Katy Perry in the “Dark Horse” music video in Egyptian pharaoh regalia, winking while wearing a studded grill in her mouth]

Can you guess?

Related Posts:

Ancient Egyptian “Blackness” in the Graeco-Roman Imagination

after making a post about with statistics about black oscar nominees/winners, i was asked to do it for other PoC so here you go, a compilation post  

since the academy awards began in 1929:  

a black man has been nominated for best leading actor 20 times 

  • out of these 20 nominations, there are only 13 different black men who have been nominated  
  • only twice were more than one black actor nominated in the same year 
  • out of these 20 nominations, only four won (not including Chiwetel Ejiofor, who is nominated this year and will hopefully win) 
  • out of these 20 nominations, 16 were for roles that had to be played by black men (i.e. they were based on real people or the storyline called for it) 
  • Out of the mere 4 roles in which the actor being black was not specifically required, only 2 roles could really have realistically been played by an actor of another racewithout it being awkward/unrealistic/changing the story (Denzel Washington in Flight, and Morgan Freeman in The Shawshank Redemption) 

a black woman has been nominated for the academy award for best leading actress 10 times 

  • only once was more than one black actress nominated in the same year 
  • out of these 10 nominations, only one won 
  • every single role required a black actress 

an asian man has been nominated for best leading actor 3 times 

  • out of those three nominations, two won 
  • only two different asian men have been nominated
  • out of those three nominations, all three had to be played by asian men 
  • there have never been more than one asian man nominated in the same year 
  • the last time an asian man was nominated for best leading actor was 11 years ago 

an asian woman has been nominated for best leading actress 1 time 

  •  no asian woman has ever won the oscar for best leading actress 
  • the role did not require an asian actress 
  • the last time an asian woman was nominated for best leading actress was 79 years ago

a latino or hispanic man (including those born in and outside the US) has been nominated for best leading actor 10 times 

  • of those 10 nominations, only 1 won 
  • of those 10 nominations, only 6 different men were nominated 
  • of those 10 nominations, 4 had to be played by hispanic/latino men
  • at least half of the men nominated have been white-passing (this is not just an opinion: they played specifically white characters such as italians and greeks) 

a latina or hispanic woman (including those born in and outside the US) has been nominated for best leading actress 4 times 

  • no hispanic or latina actress has ever won the oscar for best actress 
  • every role nominated required a hispanic or latina actress 

do you see the problems here?

  1. ridiculously low number of PoC nominees, and even lower number of PoC winners  
  2. lack of opportunities presented to PoC actors: the roles that do not specify a race are overwhelmingly given to white actors, leaving only the PoC-specific roles for PoC actors 
  3. the number of movies starring PoC people or with the cast being a majority PoC, but not about their race, is stunningly low 
Introducing Your New YA Book Boyfriend

image

Rot & Ruin author Jonathan Maberry has confirmed that actor Louis Ozawa Changchien will play Tom Imura in the movie adaptation of his popular YA zombie novel. Tom is “one of the sword wielding, zombie killing brothers. His younger brother Benny Imura has yet to be cast.”

Three cheers for

1) No whitewashing of a main character in a book-to-film adaptation

2) This face onscreen for 2+ hours.

Text
Photo
Quote
Link
Chat
Audio
Video