Freida Pinto Makes Powerful Statement About Minority Casting & It's Time Everyone Catches Up To Her Way Of Thinking
Freida Pinto has a bone to pick with Hollywood. Specifically, the Slumdog Millionaire actress wants to talk about the lack of minority casting in the entertainment industry and how she plans to combat this. Freida Pinto wants to change Hollywood's perception of her and other actresses, according to a new interview with The Edit . She said,
It’s hard because the first thing people see when I go into an audition is that I am 100% Indian, but I don’t remember a time in my life when I did not see myself as a world citizen. When I watch films, I can always imagine myself as the female lead — even if it’s Minnie Mouse.
It is really sad to hear that in this day and age, talented actors of color are still being categorized first and foremost by their race. After all, if a certain race is not specifically needed for a character (such as historical films for accuracy purposes or for sitcoms that focus specifically on a family of a certain race), then there is no reason why actors and actresses of all races shouldn't have an equal shot at the opportunity. That being said, it is positive to hear that despite the odds stacked against her, she still has the confidence to not only dream of herself in a starring role, but also put forth the extra effort to make her dreams a reality.
Pinto's words should serve as a wake up call to directors and other members in the entertainment industry when it comes to casting. While they may not be conscious of themselves limiting the roles to a certain demographic, their intention does not change the impact. And the impact is that it highly affects who is seen and who has a chance to leave a cultural footprint. In an analysis published in 2014, it was revealed that of 172 movies and more than 1,000 television shows, about one in 10 film leads went to minorities, and about one in 20 leading roles in scripted television went to people of color. It's important that Pinto is speaking up about this now, and showing that she is both willing and able to take on roles, even if they don't fit the perception of how directors originally intended the script to play out.
Another topic Pinto tackles in the entertainment industry in the same interview is the topic of beauty, and how standards are unfairly stacked against some women as they pursue leading roles:
I’m aware of the perception and I always say that if it’s because of that one line in Slumdog where Latika is described as "the most beautiful girl in the world," then I have to do everything that I can to change that perception.
If her success so far is any indication, it looks like she's well on her way. Kudos to her!
Image: Getty Images