Pedro Pascal Defends Blind Casting in Hollywood

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In a newly aired episode of Variety’s “Awards Circuit Video Podcast” hosted by Senior Awards Editor Clayton Davis, actor Pedro Pascal sat down with the host to discuss his rapid rise to fame and thoughts on the industry as a whole. One of the topics their conversation touched upon was blind casting, which Pascal supports.

The actor said, “I think that the change is really important and that the best way to continue representation is just casting a person into a role that isn’t limiting a character to racial identity.”

“Especially if it’s an IP we’re familiar with or a book. People get so butthurt about this kind of stuff, but who cares? Because that’s the coolest way of moving the needle is being open about the casting in every way,” said Pascal.

In recent years, casting fictional characters as people of color has been both a celebrated boost for representation and criticized for straying from source material featuring white characters. One notable example of blind casting was the recently released “Little Mermaid” film starring Halle Bailey. Bailey’s Ariel is Black, while the previous Disney cartoon portrayed the character as white, and the original Haans Christian Anderson story did not specify the character’s race.

Internet Reactions

Many supported Pascal’s thoughts on blind casting, as fictional characters often found within fantasy and science fiction genres tend to have racial identities that are not even specified in the source material. Such was the case with Pascal’s character Joel Miller in HBO’s hit show “The Last of Us.” The original video game portrays the character as white, while Pascal is Chilean.


Some even shared their favorite surprise casting choices.

Others appeared to twist his words, joking that Ryan Gosling should have been cast in “Black Panther.” The argument for blind casting is often to diversify fictional narratives that do not contain story elements pertaining to a specific race, whereas the “Black Panther” franchise was written specifically to the Black experience in a fictional context.

Amid the conservative backlash surrounding Pascal’s quote, some Twitter users attempted to provide definitions for blind casting.


Pascal is currently acting in the unnamed “Gladiator” sequel alongside actor Paul Mescal. Shooting began recently in Morocco and Malta.

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