Mads Mikkelsen, a Danish actor most well known for his portrayal of culinary baddie Hannibal Lecter from the hit television series “Hannibal,” along with director Nikolaj Arcel, were totally befuddled by a reporter at the Venice Film Festival who asked them why their 18th-century European drama did not have any black people in it. This is such a stupid question that I almost want to scream out loud.
Maybe, just maybe, the reason the project has zero black people in it is because blacks were not all that common in Europe at the time? And, just tossing out a possibility here, perhaps both Mikkelsen and Arcel wanted to create a project that was accurate to real life history and not revise it for the sake of modern-day wokeness and identity politics? I’m not a betting man, but if I were, I’d put a million bucks on being right about this.
“‘The Promised Land’ is a historical drama focusing on the life of Ludvig Kahlen who arrived in Denmark to cultivate the land but quickly ran into trouble. One of the main actors is a black woman, a move done to represent historical accuracy,” the Daily Caller reported.
Apparently this was not made obvious to the reporter who then asked why the project lacked diversity.
“Hello, I am from Denmark and it’s a pleasure to be here,” a reporter said. “So you’re a little bit into it, this is a cast and Danish production, which is entirely Nordic, it therefore has some lack of diversity you would say. There’s also new rules implied in Hollywood–”
“What are you onto?” Mikkelsen interjected right off the bat, shaking his head in utter disbelief about the direction the reporter was headed.
“Sorry,” the reporter said. Mikkelsen then asked him to repeat the questions from the beginning.
“There is said some rules of diversity across the Atlantic for competing in the best picture, the equivalent to this competition. As I see, you don’t live up to these standards with this broadcast and there is just a curiosity, it’s not because of artistic reasons, because of lack of diversity that this can’t compete in that competition. Are you worried about that?” the reporter asked the pair.
“Are you?” Mikkelsen fired back. “You’re putting us on the spot so you answer the question.”
The reporter responded by recounting that “Parasite” a thriller created in South Korea, contained a “level of diversity” and was deemed to be eligible for competition, but stated since “The Promised Land” features an entirely Nordic cast, it’s in a “bit of a conundrum.”
“I don’t understand the question,” Mikkelsen responded, which inspired Arcel to give it a shot.
“Well, first of all, the film takes place in Denmark in the 1750’s, we do have a big plot line you know about a girl of color who is being subjected to racism and you know and which was very rare [to have] any people of color in Denmark and almost nobody, she was probably at the time the only one in the entire country of Denmark so I would say that it hasn’t been, it wasn’t a thought in our minds, that I think it would be a little weird, you know, if – it’s just a historical [portrayal] of how it was in 1750,” the director replied.
This is why Hollywood continues to take a massive financial hit at the box office. People are sick of these arbitrary standards being applied to their entertainment. All we want are well told stories. Is that too much to ask? Apparently so.
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