Upworthy asked some actors of color to describe what it's like working in the entertainment industry. What we found were a whole bunch of stereotypes.
What kinds of roles are actors of color being offered?
And when actors don't fit the stereotype? Casting directors offer suggestions like:
So what's the problem?
I wish these were just terrible one-off experiences. But as an actor myself, I've been asked numerous times to "black it up" or "tap into your diva" at auditions. What's the big deal? Why isn't it OK to cast people of color as stereotypical side characters? While some might argue it's just entertainment, media shapes how we see the world and how we see ourselves. Diverse representations of people from all walks of life promotes tolerance and understanding, and it improves the self-esteem of children and people of color.
Take a look at the full video below to get a glimpse of what it's like trying to make it in entertainment as a person of color.
Full disclosure: I'm in this video! That's me at 0:44. ;)
For more videos on this subject, check out one of this powerful video — interviews with amazing cast of the web-series Misspelled talking about their experience as actors of color at casting calls,