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  1. #16

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    Quote Originally Posted by roxystar68 View Post
    Adam Pascal...Idina Menzel...Egyptians? No, but it worked for Aida. It all depends on circumstances.
    By that same token the entire cast of Joseph 'got away with it too'.

    My point is more about casting a black/Asian/white actor in a role where their colour is inappropriate in the context of the piece. I very much doubt whether Aida had any genuine Eygptians in the cast.
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  2. #17

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    Vanessa Williams was cast as the Hispanic 'Rosey' In a TV version Bye Bye Birdie.
    Mexican actor Cantiflas was cast in the Frenchman manservant role in Around the World in 80 days.
    Jackie Chan was later cast in the same role in the remake.
    Anthony Quinn (a Mexican) was Zorba the Greek.
    Al Jolson, was cast as a Jew in The JAzz Singer.

    and Vicki Lawernce was a white mammy in the Carol Burnnet Show skit 'Went With The Wind'
    Who ever is best for the role I say, and again context is everything.

  3. #18

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    Quote Originally Posted by sailerm View Post
    Vanessa Williams was cast as the Hispanic 'Rosey' In a TV version Bye Bye Birdie.
    A lot of Hispanic people are of mixed race, like Vanessa Williams is. It's therefore not a stretch to accept her in a Hispanic role.

    Quote Originally Posted by sailerm View Post
    Mexican actor Cantiflas was cast in the Frenchman manservant role in Around the World in 80 days.
    And while he did a good job, he wasn't entirely believable as a Frenchman in the part. His accent was a little obvious in parts.

    Quote Originally Posted by sailerm View Post
    Jackie Chan was later cast in the same role in the remake.
    Which is one reason the film was a creative and financial failure. Chan's character, however, was rewritten to be Chinese (his character's real name was Lau Xing), and the original name "Passepartout" was rewritten to be a joke based on a verbal misunderstanding about passports.

    This is the same film that cast Arnold Schwarzenegger as a Turkish prince.

    Apparently the casting and story revisions were made for comedic effect.

    Quote Originally Posted by sailerm View Post
    Anthony Quinn (a Mexican) was Zorba the Greek.
    Anthony Quinn was blessed in that his Irish and Mexican heritage provided him with an appearance that could easily be adapted to that of many different ethnicities, including various Mediterranean peoples (Italians, Greeks, Spaniards, Arabs, etc.)

    Quote Originally Posted by sailerm View Post
    Al Jolson, was cast as a Jew in The JAzz Singer.
    Al Jolson was Jewish. His birth name was Asa Yoelson. Need a paper towel for the egg?

    However, you bring up an interesting point - that of white actors playing roles in blackface.




    Yeah. Delightful.

    Quote Originally Posted by sailerm View Post
    and Vicki Lawernce was a white mammy in the Carol Burnnet Show skit 'Went With The Wind'
    Spoofs get a lot more leeway, though. The Carol Burnett Show wasn't a drama series.

    Quote Originally Posted by sailerm View Post
    Who ever is best for the role I say, and again context is everything.
    Right, which is why, like I said, you don't see Ron Howard playing Idi Amin and you don't see Forrest Whitaker playing Richie Cunningham.

  4. #19

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    It makes sense. I didn't know Jolson was Jewish.. Is Neil Diamond Jewish? He did the remake of The JAzz Singer.

    White actors in black face, thats a tough one, given the horrible stereotypes, however Robert Downey Jr. is playing in black face in the upcoming Ben Stiller film.
    And let's not forget Ted Danson's roasting of Whoopi Goldberg back when they were dating.

    So, if you had to cast a film with Indians (from India) would you cast this one?

  5. #20

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    Quote Originally Posted by sailerm View Post
    It makes sense. I didn't know Jolson was Jewish.. Is Neil Diamond Jewish? He did the remake of The JAzz Singer.
    Yup, he sure is.

    Quote Originally Posted by sailerm View Post
    White actors in black face, thats a tough one, given the horrible stereotypes, however Robert Downey Jr. is playing in black face in the upcoming Ben Stiller film.
    I know. It's controversial humor at best. At least they're not playing it serious.

    Quote Originally Posted by sailerm View Post
    And let's not forget Ted Danson's roasting of Whoopi Goldberg back when they were dating.
    Which she has said before was her idea. And besides, it was at a private event that was then publicized in the press. It was never performed for a public audience.

    Quote Originally Posted by sailerm View Post
    So, if you had to cast a film with Indians (from India) would you cast this one?
    Probably, if there was the role of a beautiful woman in it, sure.

  6. #21

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    Me too.. In a heart beat.
    I'd even cast her as a Mexican, English woman, South African, Puerto Rican, and even an American (if she could master the accent of course)

  7. #22

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    It really depends. In the general sense, I'm all for it. It doesn't bother me that King Triton is being played by someone green.

    The only time where I do see it as an issue is when race does matter to the plot. My s. o. saw a production of Hairspray (touring version) in San Jose. He felt weirded out that Motormouth was black faced by a white woman.

    In instances like college productions and high school production, I can give a little leeway. Our college production of West Side Story had a few Filipinos on the Jet side. Though it does make me wonder why there were a few whites on the Sharks side, couldn't they have traded?


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  8. #23

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    Quote Originally Posted by nathan detroit View Post
    Jonathon Price was famously cast as The Engineer in the original cast of Miss Siagon and there was up-roar! It seems that colour-blind casting can only work one way.
    My Vietnamese s. o. and I talk about The Engineer all the time! Well, The Engineer is the best character in the show, at least in our opinion. Jonathan Pryce was okay as The Engineer, but I preferred him in Evita where he played GASP a Latino! Suffice to say, he did a great job.

    Back to The Engineer. The story why a white guy could play The Engineer is because the character is Euroasian. There's a point where The Engineer references his mother as a French whore. Yet, my s. o. thinks it's a cop-out to cast a white guy as The Engineer. Most of his mannerisms are very Vietnamese. Then again, the best Engineers I've seen were mostly Filipino - look up Leo Valdez on youtube. *shrug*

    I saw the Cinderella ABC movie not too long ago. My (multi-ethnic) friends kept joking about it. So Black + White = Asian Prince?

    Yet, back to my point where casting ethnicities in parts that would make sense - shows like Miss Saigon, Hairspray, Ragtime, The Color Purple, Rent, etc where culture and ethnicity is part of the main theme and plot, that's where I can give it the go.


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  9. #24

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    Quote Originally Posted by nathan detroit View Post
    By that same token the entire cast of Joseph 'got away with it too'.

    My point is more about casting a black/Asian/white actor in a role where their colour is inappropriate in the context of the piece. I very much doubt whether Aida had any genuine Eygptians in the cast.
    No, but I meant people that looked like they could be..like Idina, however much I love her acting and her voice, doesn't look close to African or even Middle Eastern. I understand what you mean though.

    And since West Side Story was mentioned earlier, wasn't the movie Bernardo (George Chakiris) Greek? It worked though, he looked like he could be Puerto Rican. And Natalie Wood was Russian! It all depends on context and the actors.
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  10. #25

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    Quote Originally Posted by Scarlet Rhapsody View Post
    The only time where I do see it as an issue is when race does matter to the plot. My s. o. saw a production of Hairspray (touring version) in San Jose. He felt weirded out that Motormouth was black faced by a white woman.
    Eww! That's, that's, that's just....out of line. And in the Bay Area, no less. I could probably be a little forgiving of that if it was, say, North Dakota, or Alaska.

    Quote Originally Posted by Scarlet Rhapsody View Post
    In instances like college productions and high school production, I can give a little leeway. Our college production of West Side Story had a few Filipinos on the Jet side. Though it does make me wonder why there were a few whites on the Sharks side, couldn't they have traded?
    Same here. I was in Fiddler on the Roof in high school, and one of the dancing Russians was a Black guy. Naturally, there were "Black Russian" jokes heard during early rehearsals. And I'm sure it made a few in the audience titter a bit. But the guy busted his butt in that job. The only other Black guy in the cast that I recall didn't really have a visible part: he was hidden under the extremely long dress of Fruma Sarah, Tevye's ghostly first wife, supporting the actress on his shoulders, since he was very tall (the ghost wife character is supposed to be flying/floating). He was interesting because when I met him about a decade after graduation, he was now a she. But that's another story.

  11. #26

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    Quote Originally Posted by roxystar68 View Post
    No, but I meant people that looked like they could be..like Idina, however much I love her acting and her voice, doesn't look close to African or even Middle Eastern.
    She doesn't look sub-Saharan African, but Idina Menzel is Jewish, and Jews and Egyptians are next-door neighbors in the Middle East. So to say she couldn't pass as an Egyptian character is, well, odd. Most Israelis are almost indistinguishable from Arabs. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Semitic

    Quote Originally Posted by roxystar68 View Post
    And since West Side Story was mentioned earlier, wasn't the movie Bernardo (George Chakiris) Greek?
    Yep.

    Quote Originally Posted by roxystar68 View Post
    It worked though, he looked like he could be Puerto Rican. And Natalie Wood was Russian! It all depends on context and the actors.
    Indeed. One of my favorite character actors is a marvelous thespian from New Zealand named Cliff Curtis. He's ethnically Maori, but he has played a range of different roles and ethnicities in films. He played Colombian drug lord Pablo Escobar in Blow (2001), an Arab in Three Kings (1999) and The Insider (1999), a Latino in Training Day (2001) and Runaway Jury (2003), and a drug dealer of ambiguous ethnicity in Bringing Out the Dead (1999). However, he is probably best known for his role as Paikea's father Porourangi, in Whale Rider (2002).

  12. #27

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    I've just booked to see Spamalot in London. Currently King Arthur is being played by an Indian!

    http://www.montypythonsspamalot.com/...anjeev_bhaskar

    This is sure to ruin the historical integrity of the piece!
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  13. #28

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    Smile Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    You have to also take in consideration that they're families that adopt outside of their race. There was a time when those families weren't represented. I'm not sure how it is out on the West Coast. But in New York City my daughter has classmates that the parents are one race and the child is another. There are families of the same sex. This is the world we live in. I believe these families should see families that reflect them. I know growing up as an African American little girl I didn't see little girls that looked like me on t.v. It puzzling to a child.
    If you aren't a minority( I hate using that term) you really wouldn't understand. On the other hand, I do believe for accuracy that some things should be left as is.

  14. #29

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    Quote Originally Posted by nathan detroit View Post
    ^Phew! You make some good points and of course Disney did remake (Rodgers and Hammerstein's) Cinderella with a mixed race cast but kept the traditional setting. It didn't work.

    Ernie Hudson's role in Ghostbusters is a more obvious example of this.
    Quote Originally Posted by krystledm View Post
    I was going to point out the Cinderella as well. it came out when i was still young enough to not understand the world and i asked my mom, "why is the mom black, the dad white and the kid asian...."

    so clearly it was distracting...
    Okay can I just say that version of Cinderella made me so peeved as a teenager? I actually got in trouble with my mom because of that movie. I was watching thinking the same thing as Krystle "Why is the dad white, the mom black with dreadlocks, and they have an asian son?" And I got into trouble for saying the next logical thing for a 16 year old (and I'm cleaning it up...) "who was she sleeping with?". Problem with color blind casting is you're gonna' have kids asking "wait if they're related why aren't they the same...?" or you're gonna' get kids like me who had to eat soap after their reaction. And the producers of the show better realize that's coming.

  15. #30

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    Re: Colour-Blind Casting

    "who was she sleeping with?"
    I'm Mexican (dark haired, olive complexion), my wife Anglo (blonde blue-eyed, fair skinned). Our kids are all blue-eyed fair skinned Mexicans














    So I get the "Are THOSE YOUR kids?" all the time.

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