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Hollywood, We've Seen Enough 'Madea,' We need diverse roles for black actors

Because we're tired.

cast of black panther

Hollywood, it's 2018, and it's time for black people to be cast in different roles. We've all seen at least few movies from each genre. We've all gone to a movie theater, excited to see what Hollywood has in store for us, eager to sit for two hours eating sub-par popcorn while we try to follow the plot while ignoring our phone vibrating in our pocket. Imagine having this experience over and over, and throughout your whole life, knowing maybe one person in the film is going to look like you. Depending on the genre, such as sci-do or fantasy, there may not be anyone in the entire fictional universe that looks like you. It's time for black fairies, elves, and aliens. It's time for a ghost to haunt a black family, and Ed and Lorraine Warren to come help them.

We've seen enough "Madea," it's time for us to see a black person in Middle Earth.

The sci-fi and fantasy genres are some of the main offenders of having an atrocious lack of black people. The runtime of every "Lord of the Rings" movie is about eleven hours and has not a single black lead actor. One might say "But LOTR is based on Europe, so there shouldn't be black people!" To them I say this: Not only were there black people in Europe when the books were written, there are humans in LOTR and, surprise surprise, sometimes humans are black. There's nothing preventing anyone from casting a black person as an elf or dwarf, but for some reason, we've never gotten that.

It's easy to write off the narrow scope of roles black actors are cast in as natural, and that those are the roles people want to see them in. However, the demand for diversity has been well documented. "Get Out," a psychological thriller starring and directed by black people, had phenomenal success. "Black Panther" also showed us that a movie with a mostly black cast can be wildly successful.

It's time for a black elf. Not only do movies need more diversity, but the roles given to black actors need to be more diverse as well. Actors like Michael B. Jordan have taken a stand and will not audition for roles written specifically for black people, citing bias in the writing. Black actors are as talented and versatile as any other actors and that should be reflected in the work they get.

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