Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you know that the issue of non-white actors in Hollywood getting their due is a major hot button issue. Another log was added to the fire when it was announced that Joseph Fiennes is playing Michael Jackson in a new British TV series.
Fiennes, if you didn’t already know, is a white, British actor, best known for his role in “Shakespeare in Love.” The series, “Elizabeth, Michael & Marlon,” follows a rumored road trip MJ took with Elizabeth Taylor and Marlon Brando after 9/11.
As you might imagine, people are not happy. You know, because Fiennes is WHITE. BET tweeted “because we aren’t whitewashed enough in Hollywood, apparently.” Fans are calling the decision a “whitewashing monstrosity” and are mostly just flabbergasted. No matter what side of the general argument you’re on…the justification is a mindbender.
- One person whose come around to the idea? Joseph Fiennes. He said that he too was “shocked” by the choice, but brings up that at the time the show takes place, 2001, Jackson’s skin had changed. “[Jackson] definitely had an issue – a pigmentation issue – and that’s something I do believe,” Fiennes explains to Entertainment Tonight. “He was probably closer to my color than his original color.” He further defends the project by calling it “a light comedy” that was “not in any way malicious.” He adds, “it’s actually endearing.” “Elizabeth, Michael & Marlon,” has already wrapped filming and will premiere in the U.K. “soon.”
- BUT WAIT, THERE’S MORE! A video of an old interview Oprah did with MJ has been unearthed. In it – the man himself says he’d never want to be portrayed by a white actor. “I’m a black American,” he offered. “I’m proud to be a black American. I am proud of my race. I am proud of who I am.” See the full interview to the right – jump ahead to
Source: Entertainment Tonight