Comments

1

Ah, yet another tiresome entry in Katie's Quillette application portfolio. She forgot to mention how left she is in this one though!

2

@1 let’s be fair here, The Atlantic is a distinct possibility.

3

Where being a contrarian passes as intellectual inquiry.

4

Divine, a drag queen, played women in a number of John Waters movies.
John Travolta and Divine both played Edna in the two film versions of Hairspray.
Back then, the only people that had a problem with a man playing a woman were religious extremist.

I think we'd all like to live in a world where trans people can play cis rolls. Any trans actor that wants to make a career of it is going to have to play cis characters, so I don't think we should get too upset when cis people play trans yes.

Who knows, maybe someday we'll see a cis or trans woman play Edna Turnblad.

5

Roles.
I hate speech to text somedays.

6

Acting isn't real life. It's ACTING. It's a role.

7

Errrr, Dante "Tex" Gill sounds more like a butch lesbian to me than a transman. The heteronormalization of the gay community by progressive "allies" counties apace, I see.

8

"She forgot to mention how left she is in this one though!"

She kind of did, indirectly. She states she disagrees with Greenbaum on "some things" and then gives two examples of extreme positions to suggest how lefty she herself is.

9

If an actor can play a particular role well then I don't see a problem.

It's one thing too take issues with stereotypical portrayals but acting, by definition involves pretending to be something that you're not....

10

Billy Tipton would make a much more interesting story.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Billy_Tipton

As for Johansen or other cis het women playing a trans man, I’m not sure this is an issue worth arguing much before we see the finished product.
Yes, she may not be that authentic looking, yet looks and name recognitions are integral part of the film/TV industry.
Directors have a right to work with actors they like working with, and if they chose to cast her again in a different role we should wait and see how this pans out, how authentic are the story and the acting, how casting influenced the show, or not.
My initial reaction, after viewing the picture, is that of a sugary flop. I’ll still watch it and sincerely hope for the best.

As for pulling the article, my guess is that this is not the first time Greenbaum got on the editors’ nerves, and possibly no one talked to her before removing since they have tried talking to her about some of her previous articles and the discussion got nowhere. Just a speculation.

11

Billy Tipton would make a much more interesting story.
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Billy_Tipton

As for Johansen or other cis het women playing a trans man, I’m not sure this is an issue worth arguing much before we see the finished product.
Yes, she may not be that authentic looking, yet looks and name recognitions are integral part of the film/TV industry.
Directors have a right to work with actors they like working with, and if they chose to cast her again in a different role we should wait and see how this pans out, how authentic are the story and the acting, how casting influenced the show, or not.
My initial reaction, after viewing the picture, is that of a sugary flop. I’ll still watch it and sincerely hope for the best.

As for pulling the article, my guess is that this is not the first time Greenbaum got on the editors’ nerves, and possibly no one talked to her before removing since they have tried talking to her about some of her previous articles and the discussion got nowhere. Just a speculation.

12

ouch, double

13

the level of snowflakism coming out of the LGBTQBLTXYZ+/@! community fringes is really getting tiresome

14

"I think the way people are looking at media right now, it’s like, if there’s a character that doesn’t represent the reader's political beliefs, then that person is wrong. We’d live a very boring world if everyone always had to agree with one another. Sorry, I'm getting riled up. Things are really fascistic online. It’s like no one wants anyone to be weird. They want people to fit in the box, or in the category." Otessa Moshfegh, one post up

15

Countdown until Linda Hunt has to give back her Oscar.

16

Yet no one seems to be outraged that very story itself was about pile of shit criminal, sex trafficker, gangster, exploiter of young girls and women, and pimp?

I guess we'll have to wait for the low budget version of the movie to be made about Gill — and THEN there will picket lines about the glorification of a misogynist.

18

@17 How exactly is the left "eating their own" in this case? Greenbaum just published a column the other week about why democrats should be the party of Michael fucking Bloomberg, and Scarlett Johanssen is a decamillionaire.

19

No activists as fractious as trans activists. Sigh.

Good actors can convincingly and respectfully play characters who are very different from them. That's why nice Jewish boy Jon Bernthal was able to play Italian-American Frank Castle to a T. (Okay, maybe that's a bad example, given how many cultural commonalities there are.) That's why neurotypical Dustin Hoffman was able to play severely autistic Raymond Babbitt. It may take some research, but it's perfectly doable.

Part of the problem, honestly, is the dearth of trans actors by the very rareness of transsexuality/transgender identity. Even if there's no filtering effect, if only ~1% of actors are trans, it's going to be hard to find trans actors who fit particular trans characters AND who have the acting talent to do the roles well.

20

@18. the left is eating our own and I hate. People seem to hate success. They want the Hollywood pay gap to go down but then sabotage ScarJo in her big Sci-Fi epic that could make her tens of millions. Then they complain that a woman could play a woman that dressed/acted like a man! It is so stupid. Meanwhile, republicans are gerrymandering districts to stack the courts for decades.

21

Everyone knows that the original "Most Interesting Man In The World" - depicted as a mexican playboy - was in reality jewish guy from Long Island, right?

22

@19

I think the claim of people not having talent is used for other groups. For example:

https://twitter.com/maurenegoo/status/906303909995585536

Anyway, there are trans actors and the talent is there. They may not be household names, but that's why you have casting directors, and a film that can afford Scarlett Johansson can certainly search widely for a trans actor.

24

@22 However they won't be able to raise the funding they would like, or reach as wide an audience, without a well known actor like Scarlett Johansson. In other words, they can only afford Scarlett Johansson because Scarlett Johansson agreed to be in the film.

25

"The Atlantic is a distinct possibility."

How about the NYT or can no one be squeezed between Roxanne Gay and Lindy West?

27

Johannson wins this whole thing with her thoughtful response.

Now Greenbaum can go that Dark Web money and kick it at the conventions with Katie, JBP, and that professor from Evergreen.

28

@22

You don't cast A-list Hollywood actors because there's no one else who can play the roles as well, you cast A-list Hollywood actors because they're a proven box-office draw.

Producers would absolutely love to avoid paying star salaries, if anywhere near as many people would show up to watch a cast of unknowns.

29

@2

Nah, this rag doesn't cultivate enough talent to feed the top tier of the establishment press.

When employees leave this quirky small-town fine-dining circular we call "The Stranger," they end up at former Gawker Media properties, not at old NY print-media bastions.

30

The "controversy" over the ethnicity of a cyborg in Ghost in the Shell - a manga/anime/film whose major theme is "what is identity?' - was insane, and so is/was "controversy."

I suppose maybe this is good for actors still trying to break in, because they're willing to wade through a mountain of outrage and bullshit for their chance for their big break. If this sort of thing continues, it will almost guarantee that A-list celebs (those ones that have proven talent/appeal and help ensure movies are actually made because they're a known box office draw) will avoid such roles, though. Good for those trying to break in, not so great for literally everyone else.

31

We definitely need more mental health facilities…

32

Yah, remember a few years back how White people got all triggered when someone suggested Idris Elba should play James Bond?

33

@22: It's not that trans actors have less talent than cis actors. It's that there are so danged few trans actors that it's hard to find any with the kind of extreme-outlier skill and starpower that directors often look for. It's the same kind of reason there are so few Sikh movie stars in the USA.
Don't get me wrong, marginalization is definitely part of why trans actors are rare in Hollywood. But EVEN IF there was no prejudice, trans star actors would still be pretty rare and hard to find.

34

Wow. I haven't looked in here in a while. You people are awful.

36

You don’t have to agree with the argument but at least be intellectually honest about it. No one is saying actors can only play parts that “reflect who they are”, but that actors from marginalized or underrepresented groups deserve greater visibility. We still have white people playing Asian characters in movies, despite years of protest and scores of talented Asian actors. If no one is advocating for themselves this will never change.

Anyway most of these trans roles being played by non-trans actors are going to be today’s equivalent of Mickey Rooney in Breakfast At Tiffany’s in a few years. ScarJo dodged a bullet.

37

major controversy here. i am outraged.

38

(1) The director is a dick for not even bothering to audition any trans actors. I would be less bothered by the final choice if the director hadn't blackballed any trans actors from even getting a shot at it. Almost universal blackballing of trans actors in Hollywood and refusing to audition them for roles is the real problem, not this actual casting choice.

(2) That being said, if an unknown trans actor had been cast for the role, the movie would never see a wide release, and would have had zero financial backing. The movie would have ended up being a low budget movie only seen at film festivals. The financial reality of Hollywood is that if you cast an A-list actor, you will get a bigger production budget and a wider release (provided the end product isn't complete shit). Johannson's casting wasn't because she was the best actor, it was because her name being attached to the project drew the most money and the biggest potential audience. That will all disappear now that she has withdrawn.

(3) Daniella Greenbaum, the columnist, is a hack and her column is generally shit. But Business Insider should not have retracted her column because people disagree with her views. Lame. Just post a counter-opinion piece.

39

Just another defensive article from Katie whining about trans activists. Katie's 2nd favorite type article for slog is now is to passively decry the treatment she received for her awful article last year by implicitly highlighting what she believes to be the ridiculousness of trans activists and their causes and requests.

You know how I know you have been disingenuous since the beginning with your writing about trans issues? Because you mischaracterize the central arguments of what these activists are fighting for and completely miss the nuance of the issue.

Its not that trans people never want trans roles to be played by cis actors its that history of hollywood continues to create roles of trans people, always marginalized, depicted in some tragic way, and then go and give the role to a cis person so that person can get their award for their oh-my-god "transformation!". Its fucking humiliating that the only stories told out there are tragic characters played by individuals who have no sensitivity towards the history of the depictions of trans folks. Plus hollywood acts as if there are no trans actors out there, but they are obviously not doing any work to find them or elevate them. (Well at least Ryan Murphy found 5(!) trans women of color to lead for his new show)

I would venture to say the problem is not only actor portrayal but also cis writers, hell one of the best trans roles is Sophia from OINTB played by Laverne Cox, but -wait!- in jail for identity theft. ooooooh nice. Score another for the trans-deceptor role in hollywood. A classic.

But back to my original point, Katie your trans coverage is tired, lacks nuance and understanding, and I think you should probably find new topics to write about because you are doing a disservice to yourself and the quality of your reporting and honestly your writing about the trans community is starting to come off as passive aggressive and an as attempt to discredit. Or maybe you need to spend more time on writing them before publishing? I mean Andrea James had this great article that caught the nuance about this topic 4 years ago: https://boingboing.net/2014/09/26/amazons-transparent-and.html

41

No role because she's not trans? Therefore No roles for Gays playing it Straight. Same logic. No dramtic actors doing comedy? The First Amendment is being ridiculed and not recognized by others than Republicans now.

If it was my $50 - $60 - $80 million movie. I'd tell people to Fuck Off. My movie, my money, my right. Don't like it, don't watch it.

42

Oh Thrill Killer, don't you know how to play the Oppression Olympics? Oppression only rolls down hill, until you hit the bottom and meet a three-legged, trans, black, midget with ADD, PTSD, a lesbian lover from south of the border and a stutter.

43

Shorter @39: How dare Hollywood - in its monolithic single-mindedness - not write good roles for trans people! And fuck you, Hollywood, for giving the audience-favorite role of an imprisoned trans person to an actual trans person in Orange Is the New Black, and making that character a criminal! On a show about prisoners!

44

God, sometimes I hate liberals. (I am a liberal)

45

@42, Is that a movie? I'd watch that!

46

a pretty boutique issue toention let alone censor let alone use being censored to boost one's profile, but such is the paradise of the capital-generating contentious space that is the monetized discourse. in am ideal world leonardo decaprio would play tex gill, as he looks like him, and is a sleeze like him (albeit a lesser sleeze).

47

This article and the one it's commenting on, continues to ignore that this isn't a fictional character that could be portrayed by anyone. This is a real-life transman who specifically wished to live and be identified as a man, period. To ignore that is to ignore that person's character.

Jared Leto played a transmale? Fine! Because at least that acknowledges and respects that the person the character was based on lived -and seek to be identified- as a man. What next? Should a biopic of Obama star Miley Cyrus as Barack because "anybody should play any role"? Please learn the difference between fiction and reality!

48

@38 when do you think the last time Scar Jo auditioned was? How big of a budget does a movie need before the start wondering IF they should have her in their movies?

49

@47, Irregardless if it's fiction or reality, the First Amendment always comes first whether you like it or not.


Please wait...

Comments are closed.

Commenting on this item is available only to members of the site. You can sign in here or create an account here.


Add a comment
Preview

By posting this comment, you are agreeing to our Terms of Use.