Ridley Scott Addresses ‘Exodus’ Casting Controversy
By A. Yamina Collins | November 27, 2014 No Comments
After having read this article, the only good thing about it, is that Ridley Scott admits to a truth that a lot of people refuse to admit: the casting of white people in “Exodus” has nothing to do with historical accuracy, but rather money. Here is the article from Huffington Post. – Yamina
Following months of backlash, Ridley Scott has finally addressed the casting controversies surrounding “Exodus.” In an interview with Variety, Scott said the reason he cast white actors to play Egyptians in his Biblical film was because of monetary considerations.
“I can’t mount a film of this budget, where I have to rely on tax rebates in Spain, and say that my lead actor is Mohammad so-and-so from such-and-such,” Scott told Variety. “I’m just not going to get it financed. So the question doesn’t even come up.”
Scott’s film cost near $200 million before European tax credits pushed the eventual reported budget down to $140 million. Christian Bale plays Moses in the film, with white actors such as Joel Edgerton (as Ramses), Sigourney Weaver (as Tuya), John Turturro (as Seti I) and Aaron Paul (as Joshua) filling out other major roles. Non-white actors with significant parts in “Exodus: Gods and Kings” include Ben Kingsley, María Valverde and Hiam Abbass. (Black actors were seemingly cast as slaves and servants.)
“Ridley Scott is one of those guys who’s apparently hellbent on historical accuracy but doesn’t care enough to cast a person of color as Moses or an African queen while simultaneously filling out the rest of the movie with Black servants and thieves,” David Dennis Jr. wrote in a post on Medium. “But to make the main characters white and everyone else African is cinematic colonialism. It’s creating a piece of historical ‘art’ that carries on oppressive imagery that’s helped shackle entire countries and corners of the world.”
Scott had previously commented on his cast, but not the controversy, in an interview with Yahoo! Australia:
Egypt was –- as it is now -– a confluence of cultures, as a result of being a crossroads geographically between Africa, the Middle East and Europe. We cast major actors from different ethnicities to reflect this diversity of culture, from Iranians to Spaniards to Arabs. There are many different theories about the ethnicity of the Egyptian people, and we had a lot of discussions about how to best represent the culture.P.S., as a note from this author, Yamina, Egypt is NOT now as it was then. I call baloney even on his statement to Yahoo. There are no pharaohs now, like back then, who were clearly of negroid types such as Akhenaton, Pepi I, Ahmenhotep IV, Queen Tiye, the Sphinx of Giza, Ramses II, and a host of others. And if he wants to discuss cross cultures, why not put in some people from the Sudan as rulers, since history shows that rulers in Egypt were, for quite some time, ruled by both black Egyptians and black Nubians.
I won’t tell you when “Exodus: Gods and Kings” comes out because I hope you don’t see it. And this is coming from a woman who loves biblical history. But I can’t fall for such cinematic lies anymore. It’s horrible, cruel and thoughtless.
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Some notes about the HOST OF YAMINATODAY.COM – A. Yamina Collins
A. Yamina Collins is the author of the fantasy/romance novel The Last King, A modern-day love story about a young woman innocently caught in a war between two age-old nemesis: God, and immortal beings whose ancestors ate from the Tree of Life in the Garden of Eden.
The Last Kinghas already been in Amazon’s Top 100 Bestseller’s list in Fantasy, Sciencefiction, Women’s Fiction Literature and Christian Women’s Literature.
THE LAST KING BOOK SYNOPSIS:
Twenty-eight year Emmy Hughes has never quite fit in—she’s six feet tall, dark-skinned, and daydreams of being Galadriel from Lord of the Rings. But when she is badly injured in a car accident that kills her mother, Emmy does not dream of fantastical worlds anymore—she just wants her shattered life to be normal again.
Unfortunately, normalcy is the last thing in store for her once she meets Lake George’s newest arrival, Dr. Gilead Knightly. Granted immortality from a line of people whose Great Ancestor marched into the Garden of Eden and ate from the Tree of Life, Gilead has been alive for centuries and has met everyone from Nubian kings to Napoleon.
But Gilead and his eccentric family are also hunted beings because God considers the Edenites’ possession of immortality to be theft. And for thousands of years He has dealt with their transgression by sending each of them a “Glitch” —an unsuspecting human meant to retrieve this stolen “property” of immortality and kill them off.
When Emmy discovers that she is Gilead’s Glitch, she is not only thrown into a world of immortals who eat bone marrow, panthers who read minds, and a family whose blood is made of pulsing gold, but she finds herself the target of Gilead’s vengeance: he must get rid of her before she gets rid of him.
Easier said than done. Because Glitches are not only an Edenite’s greatest threat—they’re also their greatest love.