( for not applying …diversity…for diversity’s sake)

The Lionsgate Studios and one of its film directors are getting flak about their upcoming film release called – Gods of Egypt – , a production about ancient Egyptian mythology, because they’ve used mostly white actors to make it.

Apparently they’re being criticized for not using more non-whites to “reflect the diversity of their audience”. How ridiculous a concept for a visual art effort! This is just another bit of idiotic political correctness…for not applying…diversity…for diversity’s sake.

If such a concept had been applied to other film productions, classics such as – Lawrence of Arabia –would have been banned, because hardly any “Arabs” were in it (one of the main characters in it being Anthony Quinn as one of the more flamboyant tribal leaders). Then there is – Zorba the Greek – also with Quinn, and only one actual Greek actress as the major female interest. Nor should we forget – Doctor Zhivago – or – Lolita – neither of which had a significant number of actual Russians playing major roles in those. And then there’s one of our favorites – I Claudius – which hardly had any Italians, much less any actual Romans in it. There is also that grand old classic – The Ten Commandments – in which hardly any Egyptians or actual Hebrews were part of the cast…the lead character of Moses being played by Charlton Heston, and Egypt’s Pharaoh, by Yul Brinner.

We could go on with a long list of other film productions also not cluttered up with these latter-day conceptions about the need to emphasize “diversity”; but, the common sense criteria used for all of these being…how well would a given actor fit the persona of the character to be played… and how well could he or she act that part.

How would Shakespeare fare in the politically correct matrix we seem to be plagued with today? Not very well we imagine.

Well, the only proper basis for critique of any film production should be the quality of its production, how well it tells its story, and how good are the actors who are helping to tell that story. Anything else is irrelevant. Film is supposed to be a visual “art”…not a vehicle for social perspectives du jour.

Just to clarify things, here’s brief addendum to this controversy…the ancient Egyptians had a somewhat zoomorphic perspective about their gods, viz…Horus (who was shown with a falcon head)… Hathor (who was a cow-headed one)…the Sphinx ( which had a human head with a lion’s body), and a host of others combining human form with…crocodiles … jackals…cobras… cats…and so on. Now that…was true “diversity”!