"I should be allowed to play any person, or any tree, or any animal."
With the recent uproar which surrounded the casting of Halle Bailey as the new Ariel in Disney's Little Mermaid, it is fair to say that casting choice when it comes to specific roles remains a sensitive topic in Hollywood. For many, the announcement of a Black Ariel was met with joy and excitement, with hundreds of social media users praising the diversity. However, some users expressed their strong disapproval over the fact that Ariel's appearance will change in the live-action remake of the movie, slamming Disney for its decision to stray from the original portrayal, which sees Ariel as pale-skinned and blue-eyed, with her iconic fiery red hair. In response to that, many called out the numerous instances in which White actors portrayed the roles of individuals who were far from White originally. And now Scarlett Johansson has something to say with regards to diversity in casting with regards to unique roles.
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The actress was previously called out for landing roles which folks thought were not hers to pray. For instance, Johansson was set to play a trans woman but quickly pulled out after many criticized her for it and supported that the role should go to an actual trans person. In a recent interview, the Avengers actress said her piece: "You know, as an actor I should be allowed to play any person, or any tree, or any animal because that is my job and the requirements of my job. I feel like it’s a trend in my business and it needs to happen for various social reasons, yet there are times it does get uncomfortable when it affects the art because I feel art should be free of restrictions." Moreover, Johansson urges that she thinks "society would be more connected if we just allowed others to have their own feelings and not expect everyone to feel the way we do." Do you agree? Should certain roles be off limits?