The Hottest Movie This Year Isn't Without Controversy

Via Flickr

Abeni Jones
December 5, 2019

The hottest movie in Black America right now is Lena Waithe’s “Queen & Slim.” Detailing a first date that goes way left when a white police officer gets involved, it’s been called “[s]tylish, provocative, and powerful,” and has great reviews.

But not everybody’s happy.

Twitter unearthed the original casting call for the role of Queen, and it’s not a good look:

“She’s brown-skinned, if she were a slave she would’ve worked in the fields,” it says. And a massive debate popped off on Twitter.

Some appreciate they were prioritizing dark-skin women for the role. Others resent the slavery connection, noting that skin color was NOT always related to whether an enslaved person worked in the house or the field.

If she wanted to, she could have said athletic, dark-skinned, and “tough exterior,” WITHOUT the slave comparisons.

This isn’t the first time Waithe has received criticism. Queen & Slim was criticized for casting two Black British actors to play Americans. She also got heat for struggling to deal with sexual harassment accusations on her TV show, The Chi.

And Waithe upset some when she seemed to disregard the importance of Black filmmakers with a recent comment about her influences. 

Regardless, the film is making plenty of money, and some viewers feel the controversy is overblown and we’re too critical of Black artists.

Are you going to see it?

We have a quick favor to ask:

PushBlack is a nonprofit dedicated to raising up Black voices. We are a small team but we have an outsized impact:

  • We reach tens of millions of people with our BLACK NEWS & HISTORY STORIES every year.
  • We fight for CRIMINAL JUSTICE REFORM to protect our community.
  • We run VOTING CAMPAIGNS that reach over 10 million African-Americans across the country.

And as a nonprofit, we rely on small donations from subscribers like you.

With as little as $5 a month, you can help PushBlack raise up Black voices. It only takes a minute, so will you please ?

Share This Article: