This just in: a top Hollywood director said that he does not see himself casting an actor of a certain race as the lead in one of his films.
According to The Hollywood Reporter, fresh off the box-office success of the horror movie “Us,” director Jordan Peele said he does not see himself casting a “white dude” as the lead in one of his future films.
“I don’t see myself casting a white dude as the lead in my movie,” Peele said during an appearance at the Upright Citizens Brigade Theatre in Hollywood. “Not that I don’t like white dudes. But I’ve seen that movie.”
THR reports that Peele’s comments “drew loud applause and shouts of agreement.”
The “Get Out” director characterized his stance as a sort of renaissance for representation in Hollywood.
“It really is one of the best greatest pieces of this story is feeling like we are in this time — a renaissance has happened and proven the myths about representation in the industry are false,” he said.
Not everything Peele said focused on racial politics or social justice. In fact, much of it focused on his transition into filmmaking and how an artist must silence their ego or risk their own peril.
“Directing for me is about hiring the right people, listening to them and helping them do the best job possible,” he said, adding that he learned to shelve his ego.
“You have to shelve it,” he said. “You have to check it constantly. It’s so easy for it to come out and rear its ugly head. “The ego is deceptive and it will screw you up.”
Peele’s “Us” took in a whopping total of $88 million at the box-office over the weekend, the second largest opening for an original live-action film. His previous film, “Get Out,” broke records by pulling $250 million on a budget of just $5 million. Speaking at Upright Citizens Brigade, Peele said he initially doubted “Get Out” would be a success but relished in the challenge of making it a success.
“Every two weeks I’d go, ‘What the f**k am I doing? I’m writing a movie where a black man is victimized and all the white people are evil and I’m trying to get the audience to have fun,'” he recalled. “But if you could make that fun…that’s what brought me back.”
“Us” tells the story of an affluent black American family facing off against violent doppelgangers of themselves while visiting their vacation home. Unlike “Get Out,” Peele has said in interviews that the film was not an exploration of race but rather that human beings are their own worst enemies.
“Very important for me was to have a black family at the center of a horror film,” Peele said at a screening back in December. “But it’s also important to note, unlike Get Out, Us is not about race. It is instead about something that I feel has become an undeniable truth. And that is the simple fact that we are our own worst enemies.”
“I dedicated a lot of myself to create a new horror mythology and a new monster,” Peele said. “I think that monsters and stories about monsters are one of our best ways of getting at deeper truths and facing our fears as a society.”