Friday, July 1, 2011

Hell Hath No Fury........

...Like An Entitled White Man.

One of the unavoidable hazards in the world of the thespian is the disappointment of being rejected for a coveted role in a potentially career boosting production. This is tragic at the best of times, but especially more so when the victim of this injustice is a white guy. Worst of all is the shame of losing out to an Asian actor. Angry Asian Man just posted this news (also here) about actor Thomas Jane who has apparently been fired from a new Sylvester Stallone movie and has been replaced with Asian-American actor, Sung Kang and is throwing a bitch storm about the injustice of it. LOL!!

According to this article Jane explains how the producer of the movie opted to move the film in a new direction by giving the movie a "racial makeover" and bringing in an "ethnic actor" to replace the blandly Caucasian Jane, and in so doing is following a tried and tested formula of having a white main actor with a non-white side-kick. This only made me wonder which hallucinogens Jane has been imbibing for much of his life since most of the time movies will have few ethnic actors and almost always absolutely no Asian-American male actors. Furthermore, if a movie does include an Asian male actor he is less of a "side-kick" and more of a "kicked-to-the-side" type of character. That is, of course, when an Asian actor isn't literally being kicked to the side as is the case with the Asian male actors  who have been kicked to the side to make way for Mickey Rourke to play the role of Ghengis Kahn. So, if there is such a formula it exists only in the minds of white men who view minor successes of ethnic actors as a mortal threat to the certainty of their entitlement.

Some bloggers have called racism on some of Jane's comments and they may well have been intended as a snide allusion to racist stereotypes. It is actually difficult to know if Jane did have such an intent. But, I don't doubt for a minute that if Jane had been replaced by another white actor that he probably wouldn't be so threatened and ego-whipped by it. So, yes, I believe that the fact that it was an Asian actor who replaced Jane is the reason he seems so particularly devastated by it. It is also interesting to note how much media and bullshit time Jane has apparently been given to speak out about the injustice he has suffered, when few in the media raise an single eyebrow hair at the complete invisibility of Asian men in popular culture. This goes to show just how much more serious it is when a white man suffers - even though he was compensated for being dumped.

Overall, I think that I'm less offended by any possible racist intent in Jane's comments or anger, but more offended that Jane's rabid entitlement is given so many opportunities to be exhibited. Maybe I should feel sorry for him since if he had a single good friend they would surely tell him to stop embarrassing himself. But, alas, the right to humiliate yourself in public and still stand tall is just another benefit of white privilege. As the Playlist article sagely reminds us......

As for the whole race thing, we’re always up for racial diversity but unceremoniously dumping an actor in order to make that happen is pretty shitty.
......I think they're saying that it is wrong to do to white actors what the industry has been doing to minorities for years - that is unceremoniously dumping ethnic actors to avoid racial diversity in the industry. Please laugh out loud with me.

As for Sung Kang, I hope the movie works out for him. As many of us will know from experience, being stuck between a good opportunity and the rage of an entitled white dude is a precarious position to be in. So, I wish him success and luck.