Tag Archives: celebrities

Of Race and Historical Dramas

by Latoya Peterson

When events in history are adapted for the silver screen, how accurate do we expect them to be? And what version of history does that present?

Clint Eastwood and Spike Lee have apparently gotten into a tiff about the historical accuracy in Eastwood’s films. New York Magazine’s Vulture blog summarizes:

At Cannes a few weeks ago, Lee blasted Eastwood for not including any black actors in his duo of World War II movies, Flags of Our Fathers and Letters From Iwo Jima. “Eastwood made two films about Iwo Jima that ran for more than four hours total and there was not one Negro actor on the screen,” Lee said. “If you reporters had any balls you’d ask him why. There’s no way I know why he did that — that was his vision, not mine. But I know it was pointed out to him and that he could have changed it. It’s not like he didn’t know.”

Today Eastwood fires back in an interview with the Guardian, in which the director snaps, “A guy like him should shut his face.” He defends his movies by noting that no black soldiers were among the ones who raised the flag at Iwo Jima, which is true, but not exactly the point — Lee wasn’t demanding that Eastwood change a real-life person’s race. Those movies had plenty of soldiers in them, not all of whom were based on actual people (say, Marines 1–4 in Letters From Iwo Jima) — couldn’t one or two of them have been played by black actors?

The actual Guardian article alluded to in the blog post clarifies Eastwood’s position a bit more:

“Has he ever studied the history?” he asks, in that familiar near-whisper. Continue reading

Five Not-Impossible Things Before Breakfast

by Latoya Peterson

As I wrote last week, my inbox was filled with so many tips I didn’t have time to tackle them before the week was out. So, here are a few of the ones we can get done quickly:

Rachel Ray and the Paisely “Islamic Jihad” Scarf

Rachel Ray is wearing a scarf. She is not sending a message for Islamic Jihad!

Will someone please tell that to Dunkin’ Donuts and Michelle Malkin?

Jehanzeb says:

This is nothing but shameless racism. I really hope more people speak out about this because it is not only outrageous, it also reflects the ridiculous amount of paranoia and xenophobia that’s tarnishing our society. Yesterday morning, I heard about Rachael Ray’s new commercial for Dunkin’ Donuts getting pulled because of complaints from the right-wing blogosphere, specifically from the notoriously anti-Islamic and xenophobe Michelle Malkin. What were the complaints about? Well, according to Malkin, the black-and-white colored scarf worn by Rachael Ray in the commercial heavily resembled the keffiyeh, which she defined as the “traditional scarf of Arab men that has come to symbolize murderous Palestinian jihad.”

Are you kidding me? The commercial was yanked because of a black-and-white patterned scarf with paisley designs? The bigots from the right-wing were so offended and worried that Dunkin’ Donuts was “promoting terrorism” or “Palestinian jihad” because their sponsor wore a scarf?

Continue reading

Meet “La Prieta Faya”

by Laura Martinez, originally published at Mi Blog Es Tu Blog

In a recent interview with People magazine, retroacculturated Latina actress Eva Longoria recalled how, as the darkest of four sisters, she was constantly referred to as “La prieta faya” [sic], which then the magazine translates as “the ugly dark one.”

Either Mrs. Longoria’s family flunked Spanish in junior high (faya is not a real word; I want to believe she meant “fea”) or she actually said “fea” but People’s editors didn’t bother to have sister mag People en Español help with the spell check.

Either way, the whole thing looks very “faya” to me. And don’t get me started on the “dark ugly one” part. I will let that one for you to munch on.

Ay, ay, ay!

Lindsay Lohan Creating the Next American Apparel?

by Latoya Peterson

Reader Natalia sends us this casting notice posted by Perez Hilton:

Here’s the casting notice an industry insider sent our way:

    Casting for Models for Look book Shoot- Looking for diverse, multi-cultural, mixed races, an “off beauty” is good as well as “beautiful”.. No Blondes please.

    CASTING FOR: The Look Book Shoot for 6126 – a new contemporary collection of leggings designed by Lindsay Lohan

    USAGE: web, look book, worldwide
    RATE: trade
    DATE of SHOOT: May 9th 6am call time in Los Feliz (address TBC)
    CASTING DATE: May 8, 2008 430pm
    ADDRESS OF CASTING: 450 N Roxbury Drive (Little Santa Monica and Roxbury) 6th floor (Membrane Offices) ask for Sarah or Ken.

    No phone calls please.
    Please do not send models to the casting unless they are available for shoot and call time and they agree to trade terms.


Part of me wants to just be happy that multi-ethnic models are getting any kind of play whatsoever. Even if it is for no pay.

But the other part of me thinks Dov Charney- style fetishization.

What say you?

(Photo Credit: BuzzBeyotch)

Meet the Neo-Colonialists: Madonna and Vanity Fair

by Latoya Peterson

Latoya’s Note: If you have a good grasp of world trade, the issues on the African Continent, and media bias as it relates to first world nations, read this article as it is presented. If you are unfamiliar with any of these concepts, please scroll down to where I say “Part of the solution is asking the right questions.” That section will explain why I take offense to a lot of the seemingly innocuous parts of the text.

In the last month, I’ve spent about 8 hours of my life stuck under a hair dryer. Imprisoned under this evil little bonnet hood, my only escape and sanctuary are the magazines stocked by the salon. I’ve perused countless copies of W, Everyday with Rachel Ray, and Allure – magazines I would not pick up on my own, but quickly become interesting reading once I run out of other material.

A couple of weeks ago I had run through all those and decided to turn to Vanity Fair. It’s heft appealed to me, as did the long form articles. I skipped past a lot of the front of the book pieces, thoroughly enjoyed an investigative article on how the Monsanto corporation is locking down the global seed market, and stopped at the cover profile on Madonna.

The photos pulled me in, with their stark, bare treatment of Madonna’s form juxtaposed against steel which reminded me of Atlas Shrugged.

I read the opening paragraph:

The world is a series of rooms, which are arranged like concentric circles, or rooms within rooms, joined by courtyards and antechambers, and in the room at the center of all those rooms Madonna sits alone, in a white dress, dreaming of Africa.

Oh hell no.

Remember that old Margaret Cho joke, where she says if you’re Asian-American and you’re watching TV, and you hear that “wa-na-na-na-na-na na-na-na GONG!” sound you know you’re fucked?

I get that same feeling when an article describes a white person dreaming about Africa.

Especially if they aren’t fondly reminiscing over their childhood spent overseas.

But who knows? I could be wrong, right? I continued reading. Continue reading

Quoted: Joe Francis

Excerpted by Latoya Peterson

His enemies list has grown as he sits in jail, and it was recently expanded to include Access Hollywood reporter Maria Menounos, who did an interview Francis didn’t like. “She called me the ‘ever defiant Joe Francis,’ ” he howls. “Fuck yeah, I’m defiant! It’s like that defiant Rosa Parks won’t give up her seat. Fuck you, Maria. The ever defiant Nelson Mandela just can’t stand apartheid. The ever defiant Martin Luther King. The ever defiant Jesus Christ. You fucking stupid whore. If I saw Maria Menounos, I’d punch her in the face.”

As the tirade ends, he quietly starts repairing the phone he busted by banging it against the glass. “I’m not comparing myself to Rosa Parks or Jesus Christ. I’m comparing myself to someone standing up for their rights,” he says. “I’m just saying you can have an unpopular person who is criminalized and demonized. Jesus Christ was crucified by Pontius Pilate at my age. He was not a popular guy.”

—From “The Prisoner in Cell Block DD,” originally published in the April 2008 edition of GQ.

ETA: For those of you who are not aware, Joe Francis is famous for producing the Girls Gone Wild DVD franchise.

Open Thread: Alicia Keys

by Latoya Peterson

In the May issue of Blender magazine – which hits stores tomorrow (April 15) – the Grammy award winning singer said
that she believes the government created gansta rap as a “ploy to convince black people to kill each other.”

Keys also said the government perpetuated the bi-coastal hip-hop feud that snuffed the lives of rap greats Tupac and the Notorious B.I.G., “to stop another great black leader from existing.”

This is a side of the artist fans haven’t really seen. The side that sports a gold AK-47 charm around her neck which she says symbolizes, “strength, power and killing ’em dead.” SOURCE

On the way to work this morning, I heard Alicia Keys giving a radio interview to clarify her comments. She stood by her basic statements, but says that somehow, her words got a bit twisted. Take, for example, the AK-47 pendant. That was apparently an in-joke as her friends call her AK (for Alicia Keys) and the “strength, power, and killing ’em dead” was in reference to her performances. She also said she did not blame the government for gangsta rap, but the government did encourage this kind of violence and did not take the steps needed to quell the coming violence in certain communities. And so on.

I’ve heard a lot of people weigh in on this one, but here are my favorites. Continue reading

Garcelle Beauvais derided for her “white twins”

by guest contributor dnA, originally published at Too Sense

There’s a lot of hating going on over at Bossip on a thread that posted the cover of Jet, featuring the gorgeous Garcelle Beauvais and her adorable twins:

(The one on the right is making a black power fist. I’m for surrious.)

Most of the hating takes the form of the “why she datin’ that white man” or “them babies is white and ugly” or “I thought they had AIDS” ect, ect. The kids better get used to it though, because just judging by the choice of wardrobe, Mrs. Beauvais-Nilon is going to be raising those kids to think of themselves as black, so they’re going to hear a lot of this:

That white man got some STRONG genes. What is he german?


Not impresssed at with her ALL WHITE TWINS!!! Just what we need more white folks in this world. Pathetic!!!