Out: Scarlett Johansson has quit Rub & Tug after receiving criticism for taking on the role of a transgender man
Scarlett Johansson has pulled out of Rub & Tug after receiving backlash for taking on the role of a transgender man.
A spokesperson for the 33-year-old was initially defensive about the criticism, but it seems the actress had a change of heart.
She said: ‘In light of recent ethical questions raised surrounding my casting as Dante Tex Gill, I have decided to respectfully withdraw my participation in the project. Our cultural understanding of transgender people continues to advance, and I’ve learned a lot from the community since making my first statement about my casting and realize it was insensitive,’ she said.
‘I have great admiration and love for the trans community and am grateful that the conversation regarding inclusivity in Hollywood continues. According to GLAAD, LGBTQ+ characters dropped 40% in 2017 from the previous year, with no representation of trans characters in any major studio release.
‘While I would have loved the opportunity to bring Dante’s story and transition to life, I understand why many feel he should be portrayed by a transgender person, and I am thankful that this casting debate, albeit controversial, has sparked a larger conversation about diversity and representation in film. I believe that all artists should be considered equally and fairly.
Date night: Scarlett and her Saturday Night Live beau Colin Jost, 36, at the LA premiere for Marvel Studios’ Avengers: Infinity War on April 23, in which she played the Black Widow
‘My production company, These Pictures, actively pursues projects that both entertain and push boundaries. We look forward to working with every community to bring these most poignant and important stories to audiences worldwide.’
Scarlett had been due to co-produce Rub & Tug and star as Jean Marie Gill — the real-life Pittsburgh woman who ran a prostitution empire in the 1970s and 80s in the .guise of a man, Dante ‘Tex’ Gill.
Jean Marie was able to run a slew of ‘happy ending’ massage parlors until she was indicted for tax evasion in 1984.
Super-heroine: Scarlett Johansson as the Black Widow in this year’s Avengers: Age Of Ultron
Her reign in Pittsburgh’s sex and steroid business ended when she was sentenced to seven years in a federal prison.
Meanwhile, Scarlett, who is currently dating Saturday Night Live star Colin Jost, has two movies in post-production.
She is presently filming Jojo Rabbit, a WWII drama starring Rebel Wilson and Sam Rockwell.
And Marvel recently announced spin-off Black Widow, in which she stars as Natasha Romanoff, aka Black Widow, due for release in 2019.