Cleopatra should be played by a black actor – but not just because it might be more accurate - Woke Journalist advocates for Cleopatra to be played by a black woman just for diversity

  • We've gotten t.me/kiwifarms set up for downtime announcements since Twitter doesn't allow us to have one.

DogEatDogFood

Tfw no clever custom title
kiwifarms.net
Joined
Apr 13, 2018
Try to get to this level of wokeness, you racist white devils

Cleopatra should be played by a black actor – but not just because it might be more historically accurate
Lady Gaga and Angelina Jolie may be in the running for the role, but casting a BAME actor is the only way to achieve anything close to equality within the film industry

Biba Kang@bibakang
cleopatra-1.jpg

Cleopatra has already been played by many white women ( Getty )
The Daily Star has revealed that Lady Gaga and Angelina Jolie are competing for the title role in Sony’s upcoming, big-budget production of Cleopatra.

After the internet collectively groaned at yet another Cleopatra remake, a “whitewashing” debate began to emerge. Should Lady Gaga or Angelina Jolie, both white actors, be playing the Egyptian queen in the first place?

This question caused quite a stir, and Twitter has become a hotbed of conflicting theories. Some people insist that Cleopatra was ethnically Greek, explaining that Egypt's Alexandria-based rulers were descended from Alexander the Great's general, Ptolemy I Soter.


They argue that casting Gaga or Jolie wouldn’t count as whitewashing, because Cleopatra was in fact white.

Others want the iconic role be played by a black actor, citing revelations that Cleopatra’s mother was actually African (a theory that emerged after a skeleton, thought to belong to Cleopatra’s sister Princess Arsinoe, was found in Ephesus, Turkey).
Some people are arguing that applying these dichotomous standards of whiteness and blackness to ancient Egypt is, in fact, unhelpful and anachronistic.

I’m no ancient historian; I have absolutely no idea which party is technically correct. But, ultimately, the answer to whether or not Cleopatra should be played by a white woman shouldn’t come from an ethnological examination of ancient Egypt.

The casting should be informed by the racial and social dynamics of today.

The whitewashing debate isn’t about encouraging incredibly geographically prescriptive casting; it’s not about finding an actor of Greek/Macedonian descent if we can prove that Cleopatra was of Greek/Macedonian descent. Obviously, this level of precision would hugely limit the dramatic range available to actors, and our art would suffer as a result.


However, the whitewashing debate is serving an incredibly important purpose: it highlights the more general, problematic trends within film and television, many of which disadvantage non-white actors in several ways.

Our obsession with telling the same stories over and over again, as well as our infatuation with traditional period dramas, greatly reduces the number of parts available for BAME actors.

Our enduring interest in Cleopatra, as opposed to myriad other African queens, is a product of this westernized way of thinking.

While this remains the case, and production companies insist on maintaining this inadequate cinematic canon, the very least we can do is attempt to diversify the range of actors who are offered parts in these stories.

Cleopatra has already been played by many white women (Claudette Colbert, Vivien Leigh, and Elizabeth Taylor); we should be insisting that, this time around, the part goes to a black actor, regardless of the conclusion we reach about the ancient queen’s actual ethnicity.


Just to be clear; yes, I’m advocating a double standard. I’m saying that white people shouldn’t be given non-white parts, but that people of colour should be able to dramatically portray white-skinned figures.


I’m saying this not because I’m an “anti-white racist” but because, until we diversify the range of stories and scripts we develop, this is the only way to achieve anything close to ethnic equality within the film industry.

The limited number of parts for actors of colour (and even fewer for those with darker complexions) means that, for the time being, this double standard is entirely necessary.

The whitewashing debate is important, not because we’re desperate to curtail cultural fluidity in the dramatic arts, but because, currently, the system isn’t working for everyone.

We continue to cast white people in non-white parts, and we continue to favour light-skinned BAME actors, even when they’re supposed to be portraying dark-skinned people on-screen.

This is why, if Sony do insist on reimagining Cleopatra for the gazillionth time, the part should not be played by a white actor. If this role can be given to a black woman, it should be.

https://www.independent.co.uk/voice...x114JUVoERxflXA63S5z3R-gOA#Echobox=1547583423
 

Digital Thunder

Red and Overhired
kiwifarms.net
Joined
Nov 1, 2018
Casting a what now?

But, ultimately, the answer to whether or not Cleopatra should be played by a white woman shouldn’t come from an ethnological examination of ancient Egypt.

Are you kidding me?

Also, isn’t the entire debate over the ethnicities of Egyptians especially old hat by now? Hasn’t it been established that Cleopatra was Greek or some shit? Jesus.
 

JohnDoe

Locker room snapshots and political posts are fun!
kiwifarms.net
Joined
Feb 19, 2018
Cleopatra was Greek though.

As a member of the Ptolemaic dynasty, she was a descendant of its founder Ptolemy I Soter, a Macedonian Greek general and companion of Alexander the Great. Her native language was Koine Greek and she was the first Ptolemaic ruler to learn the Egyptian language.

Take a look at the bust carved when she visited Rome. We know exactly who she was, and it wasn't black.

YYYGDOT.jpg
 

Ruin

Mercenary Slut
True & Honest Fan
kiwifarms.net
Joined
May 18, 2014
How exactly is this any different from giving kids Harry Potter books and telling them it's an accurate reflection of history? History is a recollection and examination of the past based on fact. We already have a word for made up versions of history, it's called mythology.
 

Alec Benson Leary

Creator of Asperchu
Christorical Figure
kiwifarms.net
Joined
Feb 10, 2013
I love the people who think "Africa = black" is as far as they need to go to understand diversity, as if an American black woman of Nigerian descent has anything racially in common with an ethnic group of relatively pale-skinned north africans that spent millennia separated by 2,000 miles of impassable desert.

I get her point. She's saying that there's no other optimal way to get black people more exposure in hollywood. But get a North African actress for the role (or Greek? I don't know the history well, was Cleopatra part mediterranian?) Instead of a white European or a black American. Otherwise you're still practicing raceface - you've just arbitrarily set the goalposts to say this race here matters, that one there doesn't. Saying your one problem that makes you feel bad is terrible doesn't excuse you to ignore all the other contradictory pc issues that you would otherwise demand the rest of us also pay heed to.
 
Last edited:

TheCapybara

kiwifarms.net
Joined
Oct 25, 2018
I’m no ancient historian; I have absolutely no idea which party is technically correct.

Then fuck off, you have no idea what you're talking about.

But, ultimately, the answer to whether or not Cleopatra should be played by a white woman shouldn’t come from an ethnological examination of ancient Egypt.

That's exactly what the answer should come from. If you cast a black person because "Progressiveness", then at least make sure to say right out the gate that your product is historically inaccurate.
 

Queen Elizabeth II

Mommy
kiwifarms.net
Joined
Jan 14, 2019
How exactly is this any different from giving kids Harry Potter books and telling them it's an accurate reflection of history? History is a recollection and examination of the past based on fact. We already have a word for made up versions of history, it's called mythology.

It's basically what they did with Assassins Creed Odyssey though. There's that video about "Diversity and Inclusion" training the team got that told them straight out "muh inclusion" came before historical fact.
 

Ahffline

Headed for Hell Cell
kiwifarms.net
Joined
Sep 2, 2013
The Ptolemies were notoriously insular. Cleopatra VII (The Cleo everyone talks about) was the first one to learn the native language and she also observed a lot of the native customs. If anything, shouldn't these SJW types accuse her of being a White woman appropriating Black culture? You know, since she was ethnically Greek and Macedonian, and not African.

This is why we need History, jfc.
 

Queen Elizabeth II

Mommy
kiwifarms.net
Joined
Jan 14, 2019
Well I guess I can scrap my post about how Cleopatra was from a Greek dynasty. Even then native Egyptians didn't look much different than they look now. The muslims conquered them, not displace them.

In 2017 a genetic study was conducted on 83 mummies from northern Egypt (buried near modern-day Cairo), which constituted "the first reliable data set obtained from ancient Egyptians using high-throughput DNA sequencing methods." The study showed that Ancient Egyptians had the greatest affinity for modern Middle Eastern (Arab, Levantine and Anatolian) populations, and had significantly more affinity with southeastern Europeans than with sub-Saharan Africans

https://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms15694

They were mixed race basically. It wasn't until the Arab conquest that the Semetic/Arab complexion became dominant when the darker and fair skinned populations were pushed further north and south respectivley.
 

Stoneheart

Well hung, and snow white tan
kiwifarms.net
Joined
Oct 21, 2018
https://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms15694

They were mixed race basically. It wasn't until the Arab conquest that the Semetic/Arab complexion became dominant when the darker and fair skinned populations were pushed further north and south respectivley.
the peasants should be middle eastern and the higher ups greek.
We dont have to guess Cleopatras family tree.(and its so bad that even people from alabama would be ashamed for so much intrafamily fun)