Patterico's Pontifications

12/2/2006

Premise of Racially Charged L.A. Times Story Demolished — in Small Box on Page A2

Filed under: Dog Trainer,General,Race — Patterico @ 11:47 am



An L.A. Times article recently reported that a new study of movie acting roles reveals the existence of set-asides that harm minority actors:

[A] new report from UCLA’s Chicano Studies Research Center . . . concludes that 69% of available acting roles are designed for white males, either explicitly or by unspoken consensus, and that minority actors were limited to no more than 8.1% of jobs, depending on the ethnic group.

The paper said that the report “suggests struggling women and minority actors might want to bring something extra to their next audition besides a head shot: a civil rights lawyer.”

But whoops! A recent correction says:

Movie casting: An article in Thursday’s Calendar Weekend about a report on race and gender in movie casting calls stated that 69% of roles were set aside for white men. It should have said the roles were set aside for white actors, including women.

The correction should have been titled: “OK, Our Whole Article Was Garbage.”

White Americans form 74.7% of the population in the country. If the movie industry is reserving 69% of the roles for whites, when whites are 74.7% of the population, it’s quite possible that the set-aside (if there really is one) actually harms white actors.

I’ll be away from the computer for a while, as I’m off to apply for an acting role. I need to get turned down for one before I can file my lawsuit.

24 Responses to “Premise of Racially Charged L.A. Times Story Demolished — in Small Box on Page A2”

  1. Isn’t any sort of quota, based on demographics or not, pretty ridiculous? Isn’t it supposed to be about who is best for the part?

    Russell (874da3)

  2. […] Thanks to Patterico, I saw this steaming load from the LA Times: [A] new report from UCLA’s Chicano Studies Research Center . . . concludes that 69% of available acting roles are designed for white males, either explicitly or by unspoken consensus […]

    Right Wing Nation (9f568a)

  3. So, if I go to a Spike Lee movie, and I don’t see ¾ of the actors being white, I know that Mr Lee was discriminatin’?

    Dana (e7aa47)

  4. Bythe way, when you go to the audition, what makes you think you won’t get the part?

    Dana (e7aa47)

  5. Pulling a Fred Thompson, eh? You have already hinted about your Presidential ambitions.

    nk (d5dd10)

  6. Affirmative action actors?

    rightisright (2cbc9b)

  7. Seems odd to get upset about an article that appears in the Entertainment section of a newspaper.

    Who is Britney dating these days?

    Neville Chamberlain (80a4fa)

  8. Funny how quickly the Atlanta story jumps off Patterico’s radar screen. Gee, I wonder why that would be?

    Can you say BIAS!?!?!?!?!?

    LA Times and Patterico are two sides of the same coin.

    [Are there significant developments? P.S. I don’t consider the fact that a police officer has been sued, or that an informant has a record, to be particularly shocking or revealing. In aby event, in case you haven’t noticed, I’m one person, and I cover a lot of diverse topics. — P]

    King Christian X (cab708)

  9. Headline: “World Ends Tomorrow. Women and Minorities Most Affected. ” What else is new?

    Mike K (416363)

  10. Emily Litella strikes again. The correction should have read: “Never mind!”

    Kevin Murphy (0b2493)

  11. what do you expect from a “chicano studies research center”? garbage.
    the roles are designed for white males “either explicitly or by unspoken consensus.” think about that for a minute. how many screenplays have you ever seen where jones is “explicitly designated” as a white man? and if it’s an unspoken consensus, among whom was the consensus arrived at, and what evidence is there to support this proposition?
    69% white males doesn’t make any sense. figure another 10% minority males for a total of about 80% males. if it were 80% males on tv and only 20% females, even if they were all babealicious females, that would mean that fully three quarters of the males wouldn’t be getting any action at any given time, unless you count gay action and troikas, for which the market is limited.

    assistant devil's advocate (4e8f0b)

  12. Audition, Patterico. Audition for a role, not apply. 😉 Have fun and say hi to Wil Wheaton!

    Anwyn (9b5f79)

  13. I have been on many sets, and the crew, directors and actors are not majority white at all, in contrast to the population at large. It’s the proverbial UN.

    But the LAT is stuck in the early 60s, so who’s surprised?

    Patricia (2cc180)

  14. Are you saying we shouldn’t believe “research” produced by partisan think tanks, ada?

    Neville Chamberlain (80a4fa)

  15. Is “chicano” a political party? Can anyone join?

    Pablo (08e1e8)

  16. “unspoken consensus” in casting movies –
    what the heck is that supposed to mean?

    seePea (adaca1)

  17. I’m reminded of the movie “The Shawshank Redemption.” When Tim Robbins’ character asks Morgan Freeman’s character why he’s called “Red,” Freeman responds that “maybe it’s because I’m Irish.”

    In Stephen King’s original story, Red was Irish — he was called Red because of his red hair. Hollywood certainly didn’t have a problem with race limiting the casting of that role — and Freeman didn’t even have to dye his hair.

    I think those numbers are bogus. I don’t think that there are nearly that many roles out there that really require a person of a specific race. The casting of “The Shawshank Redemption” is a case in point.

    Hoystory (de9da0)

  18. Eighty percent of the NBA is reserved for young black males!

    Perfectsense (b6ec8c)

  19. will smith’s agent saw the script for “the wild, wild west” and showed it to his client, who wanted to be part of it. no problem, agent west is a cartoon-like character who could be any race. the movie sucked because of the writing, not the actors.
    p. diddy said the other day he wants to play a cartoon-like character too, james bond. no problem with that either, 007 just has to be credibly masculine, not white. i don’t think a pretty boy like hugh grant or ashton kutcher could do it, but p. diddy could.
    the only roles which would seem to be reserved for whites are in historical pieces where the actual person was white, and this only applies to recent history; casting a black as nixon or reagan might create a cognitive dissonance distracting from the material. going further back in history, this problem goes away, i saw a black actor take on king richard iii and it turned out that the king didn’t have to be white, he just had to be evil and calculating. the best performance of “antigone” i ever saw was an all-black cast.
    if we boycott the industry of racial victimology, eventually it will die. the tennie pierce lawsuit is a product of this industry.

    assistant devil's advocate (56869d)

  20. It doesn’t happen too often, but sometimes ada nails it right on the head. Thanks.

    paul from fl (967602)

  21. I believe Denzel was in “Much Ado About Nothing,” and he came off splendidly. I don’t really care too much about the color when I watch a movie; I just want it to be decently good.

    And plus, I’d just LOVE to see The Evil Dead re-made with Sam Jackson as Ash. 🙂

    otcconan (128d72)

  22. Some older info on the CSRC at my link. Another group claiming role bias is the NHMC. Both those have MALDEF links; the latter has an indirect link to the MexicanGovernment.

    Another UCLA academic (involvement with the CSRC unknown) is trying to profit from IllegalImmigration. In 1974, L.A.’s mayor tried to get a Communist group on the CSRC board.

    CSRC info (0c89cb)

  23. King Christian X, your attempts to disparage Patterico for simply reporting this LA Times Calendar story as well as his warm, non-political anecdote about his little girl at the concert (in another post) is a little over-the-top.

    Seriously, dude, wouldn’t you prefer to get PAID for delivering drama queenish one-liners, rather than just writing them here in Patterico’s comments section for free ?
    I hear that the Odyssey Theatre over on Sepulveda Blvd is currently auditioning for a few speaking roles for a forthcoming play.
    It’s your cup-of-tea; the casting call is non-specific as regards to race & gender—but they are looking for someone to portray “smart and thoughtful” on stage.

    Despite the call for “smart and thoughtful,” you can STILL win the role—after all, it is ACTING—you merely have to pretend.

    Desert Rat (ee9fe2)

  24. Old black men and bodybuilders should be able to try out for the Cindy Brady part.

    Wesson (c20d28)


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