This 2015 short film made by Buzzfeed, a pop culture website, showcases people of color recreating the posters of popular movies. Minority groups such as South and East Asians, African Americans, and members of the LBGTQ community are featured in the re-creations, including movie posters for “Mean Girls” (2004), “Breakfast at Tiffany’s” (1961), “Titanic” (1997), “Blue is the Warmest Color” (2013), and “The Breakfast Club” (1985). In between posters, statistics about the underrepresentation of minorities in Hollywood and in the media play across the screen and over the images of the new “actors,” who are dressed in the original costumes that their white counterparts wore for their roles. While some of the statistical facts deal with the idea that minorities are underrepresented numbers-wise, the video also states that the “few roles that cast Asians rarely diverge from existing stereotypes,” which not only calls into question underrepresentation but misrepresentation and the larger issue of the lack of diversity of roles in Hollywood. At the end of the video, we see a collection of the new actors together with the words “Aren’t these movies beautiful in color?,” prompting viewers to think about the “color” (or lack thereof) they see in current films and what they would look like re-envisioned on a more diverse landscape.
The video has a clear agenda in promoting the use of minority groups in film and the media. Do you think it is successful? Why or why not?
Was seeing these movie posters re-envisioned in “color” drastically different for you than the originals? If so, what does this say about America’s perception of minorities in popular media and movies?
The video briefly discusses misrepresentation of minorities in placing them in stereotypical roles. What is an example of this in a television show or movie you have seen?
This video points out issues that aren’t necessarily examples of hateful racism, but rather discrimination by exclusion. What effect does this exclusion of minorities in the media have on our society?