Samuel L Jackson’s critique of black British actors taking US roles has sparked a heated debate in Hollywood where African American performers said the hiring of UK talent is another form of industry discrimination they face on a regular basis.
Jackson argued that Get Out, Jordan Peele’s satirical horror film about racism in liberal suburbs, could have been better with an American in the leading role, instead of British actor Daniel Kaluuya. “I tend to wonder what that movie would have been with an American brother who really feels that,” he told a New York radio station.
Though some have criticized Jackson’s comments – including John Boyega, the British Star Wars actor who called it a “stupid ass conflict we don’t have time for” – black actors in Los Angeles said it has sparked an important conversation and that they were tired of seeing UK actors taking on roles about the black American experience.
When it comes to telling very specific American stories, it can sometimes feel like a slap in the face to the black community,” said Devere Rogers, a 29-year-old actor who has appeared in television shows Crazy Ex-Girlfriend and Grey’s Anatomy. “It’s like, we as Americans can’t tell our own stories?” Read more