Scarlett Johansson: Comments on diversity were misconstrued

Scarlett Johansson

Scarlett Johansson

The 34-year-old actress came under fire for accepting the role of a transgender man in the upcoming movie "Rub & Tug" - a role which she exited after public outrage - but she has slammed the "restriction" of art.

"I certainly would never presume to play another race of a person", she said at the time.

Several actors have stepped down from a role amid casting controversy in recent years.

Johansson then went on to address those who believed she was not considering her white, cisgender privilege and how she was taking roles away from other actors who didn't have the same opportunities she did due to their race or gender. Johansson later pulled out of the movie, saying she was "grateful that the conversation regarding inclusivity in Hollywood continues". So for those roles to be taken by cisgender people (which also perpetuates the idea that trans people are, deep down, still the gender they were assigned at birth rather than the one they identify and present themselves as) is not "political correctness" impeding upon art, it's simply proper representation.

The actress did a recent interview with As If magazine about it (later picked up by the Daily Mail, where it really blew up), during which she opened up about political correctness in Hollywood, and specifically in casting.

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"It's very rare that [the final cut] is what I thought I was making", she says.

Johansson was interviewed by the artist Salle for As If's spring/summer 2019 issue, and the two spoke of how the star admires Golden Age actors like James Dean and Natalie Wood for the "unapologetic showcase of emotion" in their performances. The Breaking Bad star Bryan Cranston defended his decision to play a disabled man, describing it merely as a "business decision".

"Is this Scarlett Johansson?" said another. Should the best actor get the role, regardless of anything else?

And yes, people couldn't resist using Avengers: Endgame memes. "But there ARE ton of LGBTQIA l/non binary actors who have vocalised that they would love to represent those characters", screenwriter Stephanie Mickus said in a tweet. As such, she recognized her privilege in that not all actors get the same opportunities as those who are Caucasian and cis-gendered. Scarlett went on to say, however, that she'll continue to support diversity on screen as much as she can.

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