Johansson gracefully and responsibly announced she wouldn’t play the part of Dante Tex Gill today releasing an exclusive statement to Out magazine Her words, in full:
“In light of recent ethical questions raised surrounding my casting as Dante Tex Gill, I have decided to respectfully withdraw my participation in the project. Our cultural understanding of transgender people continues to advance, and I’ve learned a lot from the community since making my first statement about my casting and realize it was insensitive.”
As you remember Scarlett Johansson, a cisgender woman, been cast to play a transmasculine role as massage parlor owner Dante “Tex” Gill in the upcoming mob drama Rub & Tug. Johansson, who recently took heat for playing an Asian woman, created a firestorm by telling Bustle via a representative: “Tell them that they can be directed to Jeffrey Tambor, Jared Leto, and Felicity Huffman’s reps for comment.”
Cheers to learning & growing! I hope you’re still producing the film Scarlett. What an incredible opportunity to put your words into action even further! YAS! Let’s get lunch and talk! #ScarlettJohansson https://t.co/rrLd6mDKDe
— Jamie Clayton (@MsJamieClayton) July 13, 2018
“I have great admiration and love for the trans community and am grateful that the conversation regarding inclusivity in Hollywood continues. According to GLAAD, LGBTQ+ characters dropped 40% in 2017 from the previous year, with no representation of trans characters in any major studio release. While I would have loved the opportunity to bring Dante’s story and transition to life, I understand why many feel he should be portrayed by a transgender person, and I am thankful that this casting debate, albeit controversial, has sparked a larger conversation about diversity and representation in film. I believe that all artists should be considered equally and fairly. My production company, These Pictures, actively pursues projects that both entertain and push boundaries. We look forward to working with every community to bring these most poignant and important stories to audiences worldwide.”
This is wonderful news and we applaud you Scarlett Johansson. perhaps one of these fine trans actors will audition as listed by CNN, Ellie Desautels, Chaz Bono, Emmett Jack Lundberg, Ian Harvie to name a few.