Race changes that wouldn't bother you

Discussion in 'Marvel Films' started by Steve Holt, May 23, 2013.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. Steve Holt

    Steve Holt STEVE HOLT!

    Joined:
    Nov 27, 2007
    Messages:
    969
    Likes Received:
    0
    What are race changes that wouldn't bother you.

    Personally i could care less if they changed up Wonderman


    what are your suggestions?
     
    #1
  2. zeroapoc

    zeroapoc Eldritch Abomination

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2013
    Messages:
    8,199
    Likes Received:
    0
    M.o.d.o.k.
     
    #2
  3. Zarex

    Zarex Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2012
    Messages:
    7,181
    Likes Received:
    12
    Given that minorities were considered to be outside of the mainstream in US society when many of our most popular superheroes were created, some degree of colorblind casting has to take place. This is not only to be fair to actors and actresses of color, but also to better reflect the viewing audience, and also to attract foreign viewers in a market has become more and more dependent on international box office receipts. Personally, I have a sliding sale from least risky to most:

    1) Villain (e.g. Kingpin, Electro, Mandarin, Bane), Supporting Character (e.g. Perry White, Alicia Masters, Harvey Dent, Heimdall), Underused Hero (e.g. Nick Fury, Wonderman) - Go ahead and make the change. No problems here.

    2) Fully masked Iconic Hero (e.g. Spiderman, Deadpool) - Riskier than the first group, But given that the look of the character remains the same regardless of the person's race, it's ok so long as you have a damn good reason.

    3) Cowled Iconic Hero (e.g. Batman, Captain America, Daredevil) - More difficult than the prior category, and easier for a character like Daredevil who is less well known and has yet to have a successful film.

    4) Unmasked Iconic Hero (e.g. Superman, The Human Torch) Casting Michael B. Jordan as Johnny Storm would change the look of a character that has existed as both human and robot since 1939. You would have to have an extremely good reason to make a change under these circumstances

    5) Race or Ethnic Specific Iconic Hero (e.g. Luke Cage, Black Panther, Tonto) Given the dearth of minority comic book heroes, under no circumstances should you change the race of these classic characters.
     
    #3
  4. DrCosmic

    DrCosmic Professor of Power

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2011
    Messages:
    8,664
    Likes Received:
    1
    That's a pretty good breakdown Zarek. There's nuances in each group. Ie, It's a lot easier to change Human Torch, a relatively minor character who's race is incidental, than it is to change Captain America, a more well known character who is at the forefront of the military in WWII.

    I think the most "controversial" changes I'd be up for in the Marvel Universe are:
    Any 2 members of the Fantastic Four
    Daredevil
    Any Done Before in other adaptations
    - Janet Van Dyne
    Any Aliens Really
    - Mar-Vell
    - Silver Surfer
     
    #4
  5. Artistsean

    Artistsean Monkey Boy

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2005
    Messages:
    7,265
    Likes Received:
    0
    I actually don't think race changes would bother me at all most of the time, or ever probably. I remember hearing that Michael Clarke Duncan was going to play Kingpin, and that Cuba Gooding Junior wanted to play Daredevil, I thought that would have been cool. Plot would have still been bad though. It wouldn't have bothered me if Donald Glover played Peter Parker (Parker being my favorite superhero, and one I relate to the most). The one time I can remember getting upset was when I heard Laurence Fishburne was going to play Doc Ock in Spider-Man 2. I was upset because I thought Doc Ock was this older German sortof fat guy. And I was seeing them change him into Morphius from the Matrix, not necessarily because of his race though.
    And seeing how Fishburn looks as Perry White now, and if he did a German accent I would have been fine.
    The rare occassions is when the character's ethnicity is a big part of who they are, Black Panther is African, so is Storm (although she grew up elsewhere), Gambit is Cajun, Banshee is Irish, Wolverine is Canadian, The last three maybe their race could change but their accents shouldn't.
    With the majority of characters being white I don't mind them changing the race, but I don't think they should change a character's race if in the comics they are "a minority." Because there aren't as many characters like that.

    I'm more upset at changes like making Dr. Doom a CEO instead of a dictator, or giving him electric powers and metal skin instead of a suit of armor. Or cluttering up a movie with too much stuff like in Daredevil, making what could have been a good film bad by trying to do everything in the first movie. Or over explaining things like in Ang Lee's Hulk.

    I'd be fine with changing the race of Bruce Banner, Peter Parker, Ted Kord/Blue Beetle, even Johnny Storm as long as Sue Storm was the same race since they are brother and sister. Batman, Superman, wouldn't bother me.
     
    #5
  6. tvor03

    tvor03 Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2012
    Messages:
    181
    Likes Received:
    0
    For non-iconic villains and support characters, go ahead. Big deal. The heroes themselves, nuh-uh (I consider Fury to be a support character, not hero).

    Personally, I think the notion that Zarex mentioned that "minorities were considered to be outside of the mainstream in US society when many of our most popular superheroes were created" is a copout. I'm not jumping on Zarex personally; many people have said the same thing, he just brought it up here first. Yes, racial politics in media were a lot different back then. But even today, when most people are color blind, the vast majority of characters created for film, tv, and print are still white. And even when race issues in the media were at their most controversial, we still got great black characters - Black Panther (1966), Falcon (1969), Luke Cage (1972), Storm (1975).

    If WB decided they were gonna reboot Harry Potter and cast a black child, the world would throw a fit, even though it was written at end of the 20th century. Why? Because everyone knows Harry Potter is a little white boy. If someone were to make Life of Pi, and use a white kid instead of Indian, people would also be up in arms. Because the kid in Life of Pi is supposed to be an Indian boy.

    And isn't it kinda insulting to minorities to change well-known characters to a different race just to placate them? It's basically them saying, "We know there's black, latin, asian superheroes out there. But instead of simply including them, we're just gonna take this white character and make him black, latin, asian so you'll feel special." That's like putting a bunch of hockey players in blackface just to get black people interested in the sport.
     
    #6
  7. cherokeesam

    cherokeesam SHIELD Director Coulson

    Joined:
    May 31, 2011
    Messages:
    12,044
    Likes Received:
    0
    I wouldn't be the least bit shocked or upset by ethnic changes to the majority of characters big or small; it would be easier for me to list the ones I *would* be upset by. And those, as others have stated, would be characters whose ethnicity is central to their character ---- e.g., Luke Cage, Shang-Chi, Nightcrawler, Colossus, Warpath, Red Skull, and the like.

    I still find the idea of a "black" Norse god like Heimdall, for instance, to be fairly jarring --- until I stop and consider that the rest of this "Norse" pantheon is composed of Brits, Aussies, and Americans, so....no harm, no foul. ;)
     
    #7
  8. Zarex

    Zarex Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2012
    Messages:
    7,181
    Likes Received:
    12
    Personally, I would have much more of a problem with a change in Johnny Storm than either Spider-man or Daredevil. Given their backgrounds, both characters could very well have been black or hispanic if they weren't created in the 1960s. To me, the characters in the FF seems more "white" than either Peter or Matt.
     
    #8
  9. Son of Coul

    Son of Coul Not 100% A Dick

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2009
    Messages:
    4,943
    Likes Received:
    0
    Not to mention an Asian.

    I think I'm on a similar page as Sam. Upon first look, I wasn't that psyched about the potential Human Torch race change because it could take away from the "family" aspect that helps tie F4 together, but it could easily be changed to an adoption or mixed parents anyway so it doesn't bother me at all.
     
    #9
  10. DrCosmic

    DrCosmic Professor of Power

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2011
    Messages:
    8,664
    Likes Received:
    1
    Including non-white characters that don't actually go in the story just to placate non-whites is even more insulting. However, if I'm doing a story, and I want to tell that story in a way that is relevant to modern times, and so in addition to changing everything else, I also change some of the races, why then would I bring other characters fro a different story to get the same effect?

    Black face is for white people. That shows that your issue is not the change so much, but that you view these characters as essentially white. The fact that you view black characters as *for* Black people suggests that you view white characters as for white people... that is *actually* insulting. The truth is, these characters that have existed for so long, that are incidentally white and have affected all of our lives, they're for everyone. Some filmmakers get that. People who don't will continue to try and say they're PC or placating, because there's nothing actually wrong with changing a race, so anyone who's against it has to baselessly assume that it's being done for some evil reason, otherwise... why be against it?
     
    #10
  11. Tanin

    Tanin Vladeck

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2004
    Messages:
    5,619
    Likes Received:
    1
    The only changes that bother me are when the background of the character requires the race, such as Blank Panther.

    Everything else is fair game to me.
     
    #11
  12. BATZARRO WWD

    BATZARRO WWD Campeador Boricua

    Joined:
    Jul 28, 2008
    Messages:
    906
    Likes Received:
    0
    They recently said something about Dwayne Johnsson playing Luke Cage. That would be a "No, I'm pretty sure that character is supposed to be a lot more Black. That said, he could VOICE Luke Cage, just not embody him physically. I think I heard someone say he's half-black or something, but so Is Vin Diesel, and for the effects of what's basically a Blaxploitation character that's not gonna work out, here.

    And for the record, neither Jennifer Love Hewitt nor Bolo Young should play Storm.
     
    #12
  13. Tanin

    Tanin Vladeck

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2004
    Messages:
    5,619
    Likes Received:
    1
    Halle Berry was a bad choice too. Though for all different reasons.
     
    #13
  14. Endeavor

    Endeavor Que bolá con el timbeque?

    Joined:
    Jul 1, 2003
    Messages:
    8,821
    Likes Received:
    7
    You make very good arguments but I have an issue with this last point.
    Why is it not okay to change the race of of an established ethnic Hero, but it is okay to do so for a Villain? Villains can be as iconic as their Hero counterparts, sometimes more so. Yet from your #1 you were okay with the Madarin being played by someone not of Asian ethnicity...
     
    #14
  15. CB Fan

    CB Fan The Watcher

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Messages:
    2,712
    Likes Received:
    0
    Race changes in don't really bother me just because I think that there are far too many great minority actors who can portray characters that aren't drawn to be minority. I will say I'm slightly a Hippocrate as I do get a little bit upset when a minority figure be it a fictional or non-fictional character gets changed to be white (also known as white-washing) and the only reason why it bothers me is because there are so many great minority actors and so few great minority roles and even fewer that aren't a stereotype.

    Whenever we see a minority (usually black) actor being offered a role that is known to be white, people cry and act like it changes everything and it doesn't (at least not for most characters) they also act like the reverse never happens although it happens a lot even when the characters aren't fictional.

    Characters who shouldn't see a race change (off the top of my head):
    Tony Stark
    Steve Rogers
    Red Skull
    Dr. Doom
    Wolverine
    Prof. X
    Magneto

    So basically as long as it fits in with the times and history of the character I don't really care. I will also say that I understand the desire to see the characters on screen look like their comic book counterpart but at this stage in comic to film adaptions just because a character looks the part doesn't mean that they will be portrayed the same way in terms of personality the x-men films have taught me a great deal about that.
     
    #15
    Last edited: May 23, 2013
  16. Zarex

    Zarex Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    May 16, 2012
    Messages:
    7,181
    Likes Received:
    12
    I feel the same way about Bane, Electro and The Kingpin. In comic book movies most villains are of the "one and done" category, and the viewer gains little insight into their ethnic backgrounds. Also, villain types have fewer fans who are insistent on racial consistency. An Asian Mandarin is preferred, but I think Black and company provided some solid reasoning for the change.
     
    #16
  17. zeptron

    zeptron Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2005
    Messages:
    4,965
    Likes Received:
    0
    Any character that isn't iconic nor that important.(IE Heimdall and Perry White) The only ones that would actually complain about their races being changed are uptight comic nerds. However characters such as Superman, Batman, Spider-man(Peter Parker) etc are iconic and I would like whoever portrays them in a live action movie to resemble their comic counterpart as much as possible.

    There's been an uproar about Jamie Foxx playing Electro in ASM2. While Electro isn't really a minor villain, he's not A-list either. Norman Osborn and Doc Ock are more iconic and important in the Spider-man mythos. If Shocker appeared in a movie and they made him black I wouldn't care. Because his real identity never really meant anything anywhere else. In the 90s show, Shocker's real name was never even said. And in Spectacular Spider-man they made Montana of the Enforcers Shocker because like the producer said "Who is Herman Schultz?"
     
    #17
  18. zeroapoc

    zeroapoc Eldritch Abomination

    Joined:
    Feb 7, 2013
    Messages:
    8,199
    Likes Received:
    0
    Isn't everyone ethnic?
     
    #18
  19. DrCosmic

    DrCosmic Professor of Power

    Joined:
    Jun 17, 2011
    Messages:
    8,664
    Likes Received:
    1
  20. metaphysician

    metaphysician Not a Side-Kick

    Joined:
    Mar 10, 2012
    Messages:
    11,233
    Likes Received:
    0
    OTOH, there are a *lot* more white characters than non-white, especially amongst heroes. Hence why I don't think you should change a non-white character to white unless you have an actual compelling reason.

    Note, though, that there is a difference between the race of the *character*, and the race of the *actor*. Just because you cast a given actor ( *coughJessicaAlbacough* ) doesn't mean the character is supposed to be the same ethnicity at the actor. Obviously this matters most with Hispanic and mix-raced actors.
     
    #20
  21. Human Torch

    Human Torch Well-Known Member

    Joined:
    Aug 27, 2012
    Messages:
    10,850
    Likes Received:
    0
    I have to admit all race changes annoy me.Even secondary characters.

    For example,Alicia Masters was supposed to resemble Sue somewhat in her first appearance in the comic,so why cast an actress from a different race than Sue?

    Or Perry White.A character that has existed upward of 70 years.Everybody knows the name.Your grandfather knows who Perry White is.There's no need to change his race.(or Jimmy Olsen's gender,but that's another story)

    But as I said in various threads,Heimdall didn't bother me,(since as a non-Thor reader,I didn't know the character from a hole in the ground) and I thought Michael Clarke Duncan was exceptional as the Kingpin.

    I kinda don't mind Foxx as Electro since:

    A. As a purist I'm not gonna get the goofy looking green & yellow costume anyway.

    B. To call Electro a "B list" villain would be generous

    C. I had less than praise for the first film,so it's not like it could "ruin" a beloved franchise at this point.
     
    #21
  22. pr0xyt0xin

    pr0xyt0xin Shaper Savant

    Joined:
    Jul 26, 2012
    Messages:
    7,162
    Likes Received:
    1
    Out of curiosity, why Wolverine?
     
    #22
  23. CB Fan

    CB Fan The Watcher

    Joined:
    Jun 12, 2006
    Messages:
    2,712
    Likes Received:
    0
    Because he fought alongside Captain America in WW2. He's old enough that it would be changing his experiences to make him a minority in that time period. He was also raised wealthy in the 1880s.
     
    #23
    Last edited: May 24, 2013
  24. Mondragon

    Joined:
    Nov 12, 2009
    Messages:
    5,674
    Likes Received:
    5
    [​IMG]
    [​IMG] Just a random sample.

    Inhumans could easily be played more ethnically diverse, although drawn primarily caucasian looking, some might have a greek influence, that's not an implicit part of their concept.
    If anything making them more diverse would add to the seeded Earth premise being potential;ly developed for the film.
     
    #24
    Last edited: May 24, 2013
  25. cherokeesam

    cherokeesam SHIELD Director Coulson

    Joined:
    May 31, 2011
    Messages:
    12,044
    Likes Received:
    0
    When the ethnicity of a character is important only as a racist caricature, I think it's actually *wise* to move away from that. I'm not a fan of Political Correctness at all, but there are definitely certain stereotypes that are way, way over the line, and comic-book Mandarin was one of them.

    IM3 made a good case --- two of them, in fact --- for Mandarin not having to be Chinese at all. And Shane Black wasn't the first to come up with that notion, anyway. Hell, the animated version of Mandarin in the 1990s Iron Man toon wasn't even *human,* much less Chinese.
     
    #25
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.

Share This Page

monitoring_string = "afb8e5d7348ab9e99f73cba908f10802"