“Every Single Word” Highlights Movies’ Racial Diversity Problem
A new web series on Tumblr called “Every Single Word” is highlighting the lack of speaking roles for people of color in popular movies by removing all dialogue spoken by white people, and let’s just say you can get caught up really fast.
Actor, writer and director Dylan Marron, best known for voicing Carlos in the popular podcast “Welcome to Night Vale,” rounded up some top Hollywood films and compiled all the clips where people of color talk. So far none of the episodes are over a minute long. “Black Swan” without white people talking is one scene. A doctor in “The Fault in Our Stars” is the only person of color who speaks. The episode for “Into the Woods” is eight seconds long, and that’s only the intro, because no people of color talk (or sing) in the entire movie.
Marron said he’s often told by agents that he can’t land leading roles because there aren’t many parts for his “type.”
“I read The Fault in Our Stars and cried my eyes out. I love that book. But nowhere in John Green’s exceptional novel was any character’s race ever mentioned. So why is whiteness the default? The story is not about whiteness, it’s about love and loss and mortality. If Hollywood keeps using white actors to tell universal stories then it is suggesting that people of colour don’t fit in to the zeitgeist of human emotions.”