Scarlett Johansson Exits Film ‘Rub & Tug’ Following Outrage Over Transgender Role
Scarlett Johansson has dropped out of the film Rub & Tug over criticism of her casting as a transgender man.
After the news was announced, people online expressed outrage over the casting of a cis actor in a trans role at a time when Hollywood is pushing for more diversity. And the outrage only increased after her rep said, “Tell them that they can be directed to Jeffrey Tambor, Jared Leto, and Felicity Huffman‘s reps for comment.”
Well, Johansson has now provided a statement to Out Magazine announcing she is withdrawing from the film:
In light of recent ethical questions raised surrounding my casting as Dante Tex Gill, I have decided to respectfully withdraw my participation in the project. Our cultural understanding of transgender people continues to advance, and I’ve learned a lot from the community since making my first statement about my casting and realize it was insensitive. I have great admiration and love for the trans community and am grateful that the conversation regarding inclusivity in Hollywood continues. According to GLAAD, LGBTQ+ characters dropped 40% in 2017 from the previous year, with no representation of trans characters in any major studio release. 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 transgender person, and I am thankful that this casting debate, albeit controversial, has sparked a larger conversation about diversity and representation in film. I believe that all artists should be considered equally and fairly. My production company, These Pictures, actively pursues projects that both entertain and push boundaries. We look forward to working with every community to bring these most poignant and important stories to audiences worldwide.
[photo via Getty Images]
Follow Josh Feldman on Twitter: @feldmaniac
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