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...