Thursday, February 03, 2011

Idiot Article of the Week

This has nothing to do with animation, but it's so insanely stupid that it had me gnawing my way across the office carpet.

... British actor Henry Cavill, who has just been cast as the iconic -- and very American -- Superman, is the latest in a string of foreigners who have been chosen to play key movie roles by Hollywood. But since Superman is so quintessentially American, this latest casting has triggered a wave of soul-searching as yet another sought-after part has been outsourced.

"This casting is fundamentally anti-American," wrote one commentator on Ain't It Cool News. "It's disgusting casting to the highest degree, and I will never ever see a movie with a Brit as Superman."

These commenters on "Ain't it Cool News?" They really ought to get out of Grannie's attic, throw away their lap tops, and experience actual life as it's lived in the real world.

Let's take a trip back through Hollywood history for a minute, shall we?

* Ohio-born Clark Gable played British officer Fletcher Christian in Mutiny On The Bounty. He then played (much to his subsequent regret) Irish patriot Charles Stewart Parnell in the movie of the same name. No Irish or British citizens rose up in open revolt.

* British-born Claude Raines played Captain Renault, a Frenchman, in a small picture entitled Casablanca. The French had minimal reaction.

* Aussie actor Errol Flynn played Robin Hood, cavalry officer Jeb Stuart, and George Armstrong Custer; few objected. (He played an Australian in exactly two movies.)

* Anthony Quinn -- of Irish-Mexican descent -- played Frenchmen, Native Americans, Arabs and Greeks (anybody remember Zorba?) among numerous other nationalities.


But stupid comes in many shapes and sizes. And it comes in both "The Hollywood Reporter" and "The Los Angeles Times." Go figure.


yahweh said...

And Eli Wallach used to make a career out of playing Mexican baditos.

Anonymous said...

I like (not!) how they refer to this as 'outsourcing.' Yeah, lets change the definition so the word doesn't mean anything anymore.

Steve Hulett said...

And Quinn won Academy awards for playing a Mexican (Viva Zapata, 1952) and a French artist (Lust for Life, 1956).

Why the French didn't scream bloody murder about Anthony Q. winning for playing Gauguin for all of eight minutes on-screen, we'll never know.

Jay said...

I've read AICN near-daily for over a decade but have rarely ventured into the comment sections. Basically, the unofficial rule at AICN is to find a way to top the previous poster in the most obscene, absurd, and/or hate-filled complaint whether you believe it or not. So any "legitimate" article that sources them should be ignored on the spot.

It would be like writing an article based on an Anonymous Pixar/Disney hate post at TAG blog
and claiming the feeling was widespread among animators. (except AICN is far, far worse)

Bruce Wright said...

I hereby demand that Superman be played by a real Kryptonian.

Otherwise the movie is just being racist.

Anonymous said...

I'm guessing this reboot of superman needs to be less "Manly" more "Metro"

Hannah Barbontana said...

Why do they quote someone from a comment section of the site? Hundreds if not thousands of people post in those things, some good, some bad, some insanely stupid.

I think the reporter was trying to stir up something and went fishing for the result he wanted by finding the right idiotic quote for his idiotic article. Yellow journalism, trying to create something controversial where there really isn't anything worth reporting.

Anonymous said...

They're just following FOX news' lead and using anonymous comments as news

Anonymous said...

Why is that we can get a British guy for Superman but we can't get foreigners for Avatar the Last Airbender? Oh Hollywood, sometimes I don't understand you.

Walter B. Gibson said...

"They're just following FOX news' lead and using anonymous comments as news"

Oh please. Grow up and quite playing political on a website about animation. No matter what someone says, some goofball has to tie it into their hatred of Fox News.


Anonymous said...

You're actually defending Fox News?

And...who needs to grow up?

Anonymous said...

You may not call it fox "news." It is fox "opinion--sans facts." AKA teabagged wingnuttery--or "liars" for short.

Jay said...

Perfect example of AICN-type comments: anonymous people hating on a topic (not always related to the article they are commenting on) and then attacking ad hominem the few non-anonymous posters who call them out on it (and didn't actually give their opinion on the hated topic but the anons assume they oppose them).

Now we just need an incendiary article about how TAG members hate cable news and the circle will be complete.

Anonymous said...

Jay, you're just as anonymous as anyone else.


It doesnt change the fact that Fox is constantly being outed (not only by John Stewart, but by CNN and other news sources) as an unfair and unbalanced, right-leaning, agenda-pushing news source.

Anonymous said...

The gate swings both ways.

The casting of British fictional character Bridget Jones went to American Renee Zellweger for the screen adaptation. UK fans of the books went nuts, seeing this "transgression" of casting an American actress for the role as unforgivable.

If the actor fits the bill, so be it. Hugh Laurie does a terrific job as Dr. Gregory House. Who the F cares that he's British? Nationality should never play into casting choices. The AICN commenters are idiots.

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