April 10, 2007

Casting non-Natives as Natives

Is Hollywood Clueless, Lazy, Political...or All Three? The Myth of the “Vanishing Indian”Actors Unions regulations prohibit a casting director from asking if someone is Native American. Okay…but think about that. In 2007, how many times have you seen a character that was referred to as an African American or Latino or Asian in television or film and they weren’t one? I’ll give you a second. Are you done reviewing all the TV and film you’ve seen lately? O.K., then you’ve got your answer. NONE, not one!

Why then, is it perfectly legitimate to cast Native characters with non-Native actors?

I get many responses to casting calls, especially for historical projects, where I’m directly asked if someone “has to be Native to come to a casting call and if that’s the case, am I aware that’s ‘reverse racism’” and some who even respond on how much they “study” our people so that makes them great candidates. When I get these inquiries, I am required to respond with the truth—which is that everyone, regardless of their ethnicity, is in equal consideration for every role.

1 comment:

Rob said...

I don't know about that. Who knows how good our Native actors are? Hollywood hasn't given them much of a chance to show their range.