Cate, Kate, & Jennifer: Stop Making Movies
Dear Cate, Kate, and Jennifer,
You break my heart. You are so beautifully talented. Kate & Cate, you have inspired me since I could first manage to memorize lines and blocking. Every time I see you on the screen I melt in your eyes. Jennifer, I am still on the fence about you, but you keep racking up awards and noms, so you too are doing something right. You all are so successful, but today, I wish you would just stop making movies. Actually don’t. I want you to continue to share your gifts with the world. I just wish you would do it differently.
I wish that you would read a script and say I will only tell this story if it will be real and representative. (And Cate — I know you played a queer woman this year, but that doesn’t excuse you from the rest of this rant…)Why do you continue to take roles in movies with all white casts? When was the last time you had a true powerful and real scene with a person of color? Have you ever? And more importantly, do you think there is anything wrong with the fact you haven’t? You know that every time a woman speaks she has considered the thoughts of a man. Each time a Black person tells a story, it will inevitably involve someone White. When a queer person shares their narrative, there will still be a heteronormative element. It is impossible to decouple patriarchy whiteness and heteronormity, in short, privilege from our own identities. Why is it that a movie about an office or the American dream or love only seems to happen to straight white people in film? Why must a representative cast only appear in an “affinity” film? I don’t know who you hang with but my white friends have black and gay and trans friends. Why do you make it look like hetero-White people live in hetero-white-only worlds, that’s no longer true.
This is 2016.
Quite frankly I am over the whiteness of Hollywood. When the Academy Award nominees were released, I was furious. Not because I don’t think that great work was recognized, but because the great works are not representative. More than ever, I thank God for great TV and streaming services and I hope they cause the end of film as we know it. I am pleading with you take a stance and make some change. I want you to care. This year if you win please do not talk about the “great year” for women in Hollywood or push more white-feminist propaganda. Say something that can actually shift culture. Make the decision that your next movie will have a role for someone who doesn’t fit the standard part. Have a co-star who is a person of color! You are so powerful and influential, do something with that. Or at the very least act like you care. After all, if there is anything you can do, it is play a role marvelously.