Scarlett Johansson has reportedly dropped from her role in the “Rub and Tub” following a reaction from critics about her transgender role.
Scarlett Johansson is allegedly quitting the film “Rub and Tug” after critics bashed the actress for taking on a transgender role, demanding filmmakers recast the character “Dante Tex Gill.”
Johansson, 33, told the journal Friday she has chosen to “respectfully withdraw” from the film, which shares the story of a transgender man who Pittsburgh massage parlor as a cover for a brothel in the ’70s, according to Bustle.
“Our cultural understanding of transgender people to go even further, and I have learned a lot from the community since making my first statement about my casting and realize that it was insensitive,” Johansson told the publication, referring to her first defense of the controversial role.
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In the beginning of July declaration obtained by the Crowds, Johansson directed critics to reach, “Jeffrey Tambor, Jared Leto and Felicity Huffman the repetitions for the reaction,” referring to the other actors and actresses that are widely praised for their portrayals as transgender characters in the past few years.
Citing a 2017 report from GLAAD, Johansson noted that the representation of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and queer (LGBTQ) characters has signficantly decreased in the past few years. Out of 109 major film releases in 2017, just 14 included LGBTQ roles — a 5.6 percent decrease from the previous year, according to the organization.
“I would like to be able to Dante’s story and the transition to life, I understand why many feel that he should be portrayed by a transgender person, and I am thankful that this casting debate, albeit controversial, has led to a larger conversation about diversity and representation in the film,” Johansson continues. “I believe that all artists should be considered equal and fair.”
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This is not the first time that the actress has faced criticism for her role choices.
Scarlette Johansson portrays an Asian woman in 2015 the movie “Ghost In The Shell.”
In 2015, Johansson was accused of “white washing” for her role as an Asian woman in the movie “Ghost In The Shell.” The film, based on a Japanese manga character, led to a petition to recast her in the role.
Johansson directed the play in 2017, in an interview with Maire Claire, she says she “certainly would never claim to play a different breed of a person.”
“Diversity is important in Hollywood, and I would never want to feel like I was playing a character that is offensive,” she said before defending her decision to star in the film. “Also, having a franchise with a female protagonist riding it is a rare occasion. Sure, I feel the enormous pressure that the weight of such a large building on my shoulders.”
Fox News’ Morgan Evans contributed to this report.
Jennifer Earl is an SEO editor for Fox News. Follow her on Twitter @jenearlyspeakin.