Thursday, February 25, 2010

Oh No He Di’int!

You may or may not have heard about the controversy surrounding the new film The Other Dumas. Long story short--Gerdard Dipardoo, one of France’s most famous actors, will be playing Alexandre Dumas, author of such famous novels as “The Count of Monte Cristo” and “The Three Musketeers,”. There is however, one small catch: Alexandre Dumas was kinda Black. Dipardoo is not kinda Black. He’s just kinda fat and kinda ugly as all get out.

When I first heard about this I was offended for obvious reasons. One, Dipardoo makes my skin crawl, and two, he’s daring to play one of France’s most beloved and celebrated cultural icons in black face and a fuzzy afro wig. (OK that last bit was just me being dramatic.) I know it’s tough for Black actors in Hollywood to get the really interesting roles they want to play, but they’ve got it easy compared to Black French actors. Apparently French casting directors don’t even bother trying to find Black actors to play actual Black characters. They just paint the white actors browner and slap a curly wig on their head and say “Whatever. Same diff.”

To clarify, my beef with Dipardoo is not just that he isn’t Black, but that I’m just sick of seeing his bloated face in so many damn movies. I am under the impression that there some kind of French film mafia that requires he be given a role in 40% of the films made in France. I hear he almost beat out Marion Cotillard for the role of Édith Piaf in La Môme, but eventually settled for a supporting role.

There are just so many things wrong with this whole set up that I hardly know where to begin. It’s bad enough that 99% of French people don’t even know that Dumas was kinda Black, did they even try to find a Black actor for the role? My guess is no. I mean does Dipardoo even look like Dumas?

OH SNAAAAP! He does look like Dumas!

OK, that freightening fact aside, the whole thing still rubs me the wrong way. Or maybe I’m just being closed-minded. Film is art and art should be allowed to take creative liberties. For instance when they make the biopic of Barack Obama’s life...


Young Barack should be played by a slightly sun-kissed Zack Efron...


and Rob Lowe can play Obama during his white house years. No fake-bake necessary since he is already lightly toasted.

Gosh darnit! I do declare that I have truly missed my calling as a casting director. I think I really nailed this one, although I am open to discussion. Maybe Clooney would do a better Obama?

Monday, February 22, 2010

"What does it all mean?"

Thank you all for obliging the “mid-blog crisis” I’ve been going through for the last three months. After a few years of blogging you kind of start asking yourself some pretty deep existential questions about why the hell you show up to a blog twice a week to talk to complete strangers. I mean, I didn’t start doing this so I could get a book deal. And I only make $100 a year from Google Ad-sense. Nobody is getting rich chez moi, but still, I show up.

After three months of deliberation I’ve come up with more than a few explanations for why I keep doing this blog, ranging from: my mother didn’t breast feed me long enough, to iron deficiency and lack of sufficient REM sleep. Still, nothing quite adds up.

What I know for sure is that when something strikes me as funny, I feel the unyielding urge to write it down or at least tell a few people. I am a good story-teller. Oh, and I enjoy it. So, I make no promises, about how long I’ll keep doing this, but for as long as I keep enjoying it--- I’m back.

Friday, February 19, 2010

"And I'm just gettin' warm..."

My immigrant ramblings will continue next week.