As fans wait for the latest Spider-Man flick (one that reboots the hero and puts him in the same neighborhood and universe as his Avengers cohorts), many are taking note of the film's diverse cast. Vulture reports that while star Tom Holland is pretty damn white, his costars are almost all minorities, save for one Robert Downey Jr.
During a press conference for the film, producer Amy Pascal spoke on the topic of inclusion, which has been a major issue in movies in general, and not just superhero flicks. When someone brought up the fact that Peter Parker's group of high school pals were all from ethnic minority groups (his classmates include Zendaya, Jacob Batalon, Laura Harrier, and Tony Revolori) Pascal offered up a very glib, very succinct reason for the casting.
The reason that Spidey's BFFs come from different backgrounds is because, in real life, that's just what happens: "I would say the inspiration for it was reality," Pascal said during the panel.
Revolori, who plays Flash Thompson, added that the feeling on set was different from his past projects, too. "It's wonderful," he said of the casting decisions. "When you see the film, there's not a single line of exposition as to explain why I look the way I look, and I think that's wonderful. That I just am in the movie; it's not about a certain race, it's not about doing anything. I think that's the diversity we need in Hollywood now."
Considering that Thompson is usually portrayed as white, it's major step forward for a production company like Marvel to embrace multiethnic casting, especially since the source material usually leans towards exclusion. If this is how the next phase of Marvel films is panning out, with Black Panther on the schedule and Captain Marvel in production, it looks like the Marvel Cinematic Universe is set to reflect real life, super powers and all.
Here's hoping other filmmakers follow suit.
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