Gal Gadot’s Controversial Cleopatra Casting Spotlights Hollywood’s Diversity Problem

Gal Gadot attends the 2018 Vanity Fair Oscar Party on March 4, 2018 in Beverly Hills, California.

As well-received as Gal Gadot has been playing Wonder Woman, one might think that Gadot can have any role she wants without obstacles. That has proven not to be the case with her planned role as Cleopatra.

In recent years, Hollywood has made efforts to be more diverse and inclusive after decades of perceived failures in those arenas. However, some people contend that simply casting someone who is not white is not always the best solution.

Who was Cleopatra?

Do we know what Cleopatra looked like? YES! (as much as any ancient ruler). We have coins and sculptures/busts of her, and… Elizabeth Taylor/ Gal Gadot she was not, with a hooked nose and sharp chin. However, she was a GENIUS 5:? pic.twitter.com/kuQ8AVQ5M6

— Dr. Sarah Parcak (@indyfromspace) October 11, 2020

According to History.com, Cleopatra was the ruler of Egypt from about 51 BC to 31 BC. She was particularly well known for her romantic entanglements with Julius Caesar and Mark Anthony, the latter of which propelled her downfall.

She was said to have died by suicide using a poisonous snake. After her death, Egypt became part of the Roman Empire.

Such a dramatic story was bound to attract Hollywood, and it has done so on multiple occasions, as noted by Grunge.  One version, starring Claudette Colbert, came out in 1934 and was directed by Cecil B. DeMille, famous for biblical epics such as The Ten Commandments.

Probably the most notorious version was the 1963 movie with real-life lovers Richard Burton and Elizabeth Taylor as Antony and Cleopatra. That version was so outlandishly costly and such a troubled production, it practically sank 20th Century Fox.

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Other Cleopatras include the woman billed as the first movie star, Florence Lawrence, silent film star Theda Bara, and Oscar winners Vivien Leigh and Sophia Loren. Gadot is next in line, and she is unlikely to be last in line. Her version will be directed by Patty Jenkins, who helmed both Wonder Woman movies. 

What does Gal Gadot say about Cleopatra?

Gal Gadot | Axelle/Bauer-Griffin/FilmMagic

RELATED: Gal Gadot’s Controversial History of Smoking Cigarettes: ‘I Try Not to Think About Being a Role Model’

The 1963 Cleopatra attracted attention for its protracted, calamitous shoot, but the 2022 version, with a story by Gadot per IMDb, has generated controversy simply by being announced. The New York Post reports that some parties have criticized Gadot’s casting

Source:: Showbiz Cheat Sheet

      

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