The actor Will Smith just can’t catch a break when it comes to color be it black or blue.
Not too long ago he caught flack for not being blue enough and then he became too blue to play the genie in the soon to be released movie Aladdin. Now word is he isn’t black enough.
Who is coming up with this stuff? Black liberals.
Yes. Black liberals like Clarence Hill Jr., Valerie Complex and George M. Johnson (all writers) to name a few have come out against Smith playing Richard Williams, the legendary father of tennis greats Venus and Serena Williams, in an upcoming biopic because he isn’t black enough? His skin tone is too light compared to the dark-skinned Williams? Really? Who cares what his skin tone is? It’s a movie and not a documentary.
Actors are selected to depict individuals in movies according to their box office draw, not the color of their skin. Just look at biopic pieces from the past. Diana Ross playing Billy Holiday in Lady Sings the Blues (1972). Angela Basset playing Tina Turner in What’s Love Got to Do with It (1993). Denzel Washington playing Malcolm X in Malcolm X (1992). None of these actors shared the same skin tone as the person they were portraying. Even the skin tone of the actors who’ve played Martin Luther King over the years didn’t share the same skin tone. Most recently the actors who have played Barack Obama did not share the same skin tone or features. So where is all this nonsense coming from? And why are these writers rocking the boat?
This isn’t the first time Complex and Johnson have waded into the color spectrum. In an article published by Indiewire.com, Complex described the casting of Smith in the role as “colorism at work” and Johnson wrote, “Just like Chadwick [Boseman] shouldn’t have played Thurgood Marshall, Will should not play Richard.”
Johnson pointed out, Boseman faced similar backlash over his casting as Thurgood Marshall. Zoe Saldana’s casting as Nina Simone in the biopic “Nina” was also met with colorism controversy. In that film, darker makeup was applied to Saldana so that her lighter skin tone could match Simone’s.
From reading their comments on Twitter it sounds like Hill, Complex and Johnson are practicing colorism. Why can’t they and the naysayers just be happy a movie about a black man is being made and played by a black man? Finally, blacks (men) are being shown on the big screen and in a positive manner.
A few years back blacks were complaining that the Oscars were too white and not enough blacks were being given the opportunity to represent blacks in film. And now that an opportunity is being given black people are looking for a reason to complain. Imagine, if you will, a white man playing Barack Obama (Obama is of mixed race). Why not? But I won’t go there.
Colorism is discrimination based on skin color, also known as shadeism, a form of prejudice or discrimination in which people are treated differently based on the social meanings attached to skin color.
I say just sit back and enjoy the moment. Afterall it shouldn’t matter if you’re black or white or even a shade of blue. It’s just a movie.