Our adoration for Michael B. Jordan was already at extreme
levels, thanks to his heartrending performances on Friday Night Lights, The Wire, and Fruitvale
Station, nuanced turn on Parenthood,
scary good act in Chronicle, and, oh
yeah, that face. He had to go and made us love his mind too. On Friday, the
28-year-old actor posted an open letter on EW.com addressed to the haters,
specifically those who are still mad that he's taken over the traditionally
white role of Johnny Storm in the Fantastic
Four reboot opening August 7.
"You’re not supposed to go on the Internet when you’re
cast as a superhero," East Dillon's QB begins the missive, explaining that
he wanted to check out the buzz after his casting was announced last year;
understandable, since that's probably all reporters were asking him about for
years. "Turns out this is what they were saying: 'A black guy? I
don’t like it. They must be doing it because Obama’s president.' "
Actually, that's a pretty nice interpretation of the ugly, ugly stuff out
there. We don't recommend searching for it, ever. Jordan says he understands why the comic book loyalists might be
upset that their blond-haired, blue-eyed Human Torch is now an African
American. And Susan Storm, who is supposed to be his twin sister in the
original, is now his adopted sister, played by Kate Mara. "But the world
is a little more diverse in 2015 than when the Fantastic Four comic first came out in 1961," he writes.
People can call his casting some kind of quota, he argues, "Or they could
look at it as a creative choice by the director, Josh Trank, who is in an
interracial relationship himself—a reflection of what a modern family looks
Jordan hopes that his part in the movie can pave the way for
more colorblind casting — which, sadly, has been a wish not granted to the
actors of generations before him. But we admire his positive outlook, and the
fact that he doesn't lash out at the Internet trolls who've been bashing him.
Instead, he urges them to get outside and "just understand this is the
world we live in. It’s okay to like it."