Scarlett Johansson Dodges Topic of Diversity Regarding Her Casting In ‘Ghost In The Shell’ With White Feminism?
A Hollywood issue that has been brought up but never really acknowledged by the majority in Hollywood is the whitewashing of roles that are intended to be played by a colored person.
One role would be the character of Major Kusanagi from the immensely popular Japanese manga by Masamune Shirow, in which Scarlett Johansson will be playing in the live-action film adaption.
In the original Japanese comic, Major Kusanagi has been commonly portrayed as being an Asian woman. Controversy erupted, especially among fans, when Johansson was cast for the role.
When asked about the controversy, Johansson responded that “[she] would never presume to play another race of a person”. She goes on to bring up the importance of diversity in Hollywood before stating that it is rare to be part of a franchise with a female protagonist and how she “feel[s] the enormous pressure of that…”.
While it is true that only a few actresses get the opportunity to be in a blockbuster action film franchise, but for Johansson to pivot away from issue of whitewashing to celebrate her casting in an action franchise as a gender parity win is a -oh so classic- case of white feminism.
Rather than mentioning the abundance of capable Asian actresses in the entertainment industry, Johansson instead diverts attention back to “a brand of feminism that largely benefits white women”.
Johansson goes on to talk about how her title as “the highest-grossing actress”, she still finds herself struggling in the industry.