Johansson will be playing a woman who identifies as a man.
Scarlett Johansson is under fire from the LGBT community after being cast in the film Rub & Tug. The movie is based on Dante "Tex" Gill, who was born Lois Jean Gill but identified as a man later in life. Tex became infamous in the late 70s and 80's and was misidentified as a cross-dresser. He ran several massage parlors that were used for prostitution. The lines between myth and reality blur when it comes to the story of Tex, who some considered a gangster and others considered a transgendered revolutionary. Johansson was met with backlash once it was announced she was cast for the role.
The transgender community seems to be tired of watching cisgendered actors getting hired for trans roles. After receiving the backlash online, a representative for Johansson spoke with Bustle, and gave a statement that they claim came from the actress herself. “Tell them that they can be directed to Jeffrey Tambor, Jared Leto, and Felicity Huffman’s reps for comment," read the statement. Tambor, Leto, and Huffman are all cisgendered actors who were praised for portraying transgendered characters. Leto famously won an Oscar for his performance in 2013's Dallas Buyers Club. The response only agitated the transgender community further though, as that argument of "well he did it too" usually garners little respect in any social debate. Transgender actress Trace Lysette was one of the many people who spoke out about Johansson's casting.