Actor John Boyega, who played the character Finn in the Disney “Star Wars” saga, denounced the film’s producers for allegedly sidelining all the minority characters and giving all the white characters more nuanced storylines.
Speaking with Britsh GQ, Boyega said that his advice for Disney going forward would be to not market a “black character” who they eventually sideline.
You get yourself involved in projects and you’re not necessarily going to like everything,” he said, as reported by the Los Angeles Times. “[But] what I would say to Disney is do not bring out a Black character, market them to be much more important in the franchise than they are and then have them pushed to the side. It’s not good. I’ll say it straight up.”
Boyega charged that Disney “knew” what to do with Daisy Ridley and Adam Driver’s characters while not having a clue what to do with Oscar Isaac, Kelly Marie Tran, or himself.
“Like, you guys knew what to do with Daisy Ridley, you knew what to do with Adam Driver,” he said. “You knew what to do with these other people, but when it came to Kelly Marie Tran, when it came to John Boyega, you know f**k all. So, what do you want me to say? What they want you to say is, ‘I enjoyed being a part of it. It was a great experience…’ Nah, nah, nah. I’ll take that deal when it’s a great experience.”
They gave all the nuance to Adam Driver, all the nuance to Daisy Ridley. Let’s be honest. Daisy knows this. Adam knows this. Everybody knows. I’m not exposing anything,” he added.
Boyega opened up about the racism he experienced from the “Star Wars” fanbase, which was at its hottest when the trailer for “The Force Awakens” was first released.
“It makes you angry with a process like that,” Boyega said. “It makes you much more militant; it changes you. Because you realize, ‘I got given this opportunity, but I’m in an industry that wasn’t even ready for me.’ Nobody else in the cast had people saying they were going to boycott the movie because [they were in it].”
Nobody else had the uproar and death threats sent to their Instagram DMs and social media, saying, ‘Black this and Black that and you shouldn’t be a Stormtrooper.’ Nobody else had that experience. But yet people are surprised that I’m this way. That’s my frustration,” he continued.
Actress Kelly Marie Tran, who played the character Rose Tico, deleted her Instagram after enduring a barrage of online abuse. Controversy also erupted with the release of “The Rise of Skywalker” over her character’s diminished role in the final cut, prompting the hashtag #RoseTicoDeservedBetter to trend on Twitter.
Screenwriter Chris Terrio, however, argued that multiple scenes were shot beefing up Rose Tico’s role, but were left on the cutting-room floor for efficiency reasons.
As I’ve said elsewhere before, there were a couple of scenes that we shot with Rose that I wish had made it to the final cut,” Terrio began. “You’d be hard-pressed to find a screenwriter who doesn’t wish that all his scenes were treated as inspired gospel and ended up in the film exactly as written. But it’s the nature of the process that certain scenes fall out of the film, and I very much respect the difficulty of the decisions J.J. had to make, wearing both his screenwriter hat and his director hat — especially given that I know for a fact that J.J. adores and respects Kelly and would have loved to keep every second he shot with her in the film.”
Author : Paul Bois