Saturday, March 08, 2008

I liked it better the first time -- when it was called "Soul Man"

Apparently there's a bit of a row over Robert Downey Jr. appearing in black face in an upcoming Ben Stiller film. Of course, the film's conceit is that Downey is portraying an actor who takes on a role written for a black actor:

Downey Jr plays a worthy Oscar-winning actor taking on a role originally written for a black actor, and rather than re-write the part, he goes method.

Clearing anticipating a backlash, Downey Jr told a US magazine: "If it's done right, it could be the type of role you called Peter Sellers to do 35 years ago. If you don't do it right, we're going to hell."

OK, so it could be worse. But while Downey has his gifts, he's no Peter Sellers. (Sellers, by the way, appeared as Asian in "Murder by Death", in which he spoofed the offensive Charlie Chan films.)

That said, I think it sounds rather funny. Stiller, however, seems to have been in a lot of stinkers lately, so I'm not sure if appearing in one of his projects is the greatest career move.

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