Johansson admits she was ‘tone deaf’ about trans casting controversy

By : John Paul King OF THE WASHINGTON BLADE, COURTESY OF THE NATIONAL LGBT MEDIA ASSOCIATION
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ABOVE: Scarlett Johansson in ‘Marriage Story,’ image courtesy of Netflix.

Actress Scarlett Johansson, who last year fell under heavy criticism after being cast as a trans man in the film, “Rub and Tug,” now admits she was in the wrong.

The incident played out after the “Avengers” star was announced to play Dante “Tex” Gill in the Rupert Sanders-helmed biopic in 2018. The real-life Gill was a transmasculine massage parlor owner and gangster who was a major figure in Pennsylvania’s vice rackets before spending 13 years in prison for income tax fraud. He died in 2003.

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Scarlett Johansson: Comments on diversity were misconstrued

By : Wire Report
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Scarlett Johansson says comments she made on the “authentic casting” debate have been taken out of context and asserts that she supports diversity in film.

The actress came under fire in 2017 for playing an Asian character in “Ghost in the Shell” and canceled plans last year to portray a transgender man in the upcoming film “Rub & Tug,” after transgender actors and advocates questioned the casting.

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Screened Out – Captain America: Civil War

By : Stephen Miller
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Chris Evans, Robert Downey Jr., Sebastian Stan, Scarlett Johansson, Daniel Brühl, Anthony Mackie, Don Cheadle, Chadwick Boseman, Jeremy Renner, Paul Bettany, Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Rudd, Tom Holland, William Hurt, Viola Davis

Captain America: Civil War recognizes human loss. That’s a wonderful thing. Now we don’t just see empty cities crumble and cars explode. We know there is death – real and painful human collateral – as these heroes fight to save the Earth. This moral conundrum launches a war among The Avengers. It’s a painful a battle that pits onetime friends and compatriots against each other.

The Russo brothers – the directors behind Captain America: Winter Soldier – have the fighting, explosions, and entertainment. Yet much of Civil War isn’t repeated special effects. Mixed in are actually dialogue-heavy scenes. In fact, these are well written, clever scenes of a good length that help embellish character. Somehow, the Russos built on the convoluted mess of Age of Ultron. From that, they made a film that’s actually worth discussing.

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Screened Out – The Jungle Book

By : Stephen Miller
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Neel Sethi; Voices of Ben Kingsley, Bill Murray, Lupita Nyong’o, Idris Elba, Scarlett Johansson, Christopher Walken

This digitally re-imagined children’s tale is the wondrous, scary future of filmmaking. It should not be missed by anyone who loves movies!

Director Jon Favreau (Elf, Iron Man) shot what looks like a lush jungle landscape entirely on soundstages in downtown Los Angeles. That fact alone will amaze you as you watch. The Jungle Book is a rich, decidedly darker – PG-rated – take on Rudyard Kipling’s books and the original, swinging Disney animation. Favreau’s completely invented world is thrilling, dense, and gorgeous to behold.

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Screened Out – Avengers: Age of Ultron

By : Stephen Miller
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Robert Downey Jr. Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Samuel L. Jackson, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bettany, Don Cheadle, Edris Elba, Andy Serkis, Cobie Smulders, Anthony Mackie, Hayley Atwell, Voice of James Spader

The only thing that will save many, many a comic book fan from hating my guts is that this film is going to make a kabillion dollars. Nothing I say will stop that. These fans will use the box office as some sort of rebuke when I state that Age of Ultron isn’t very cohesive, intelligent, or engaging at all. Sure, this flick has lots of fights and explosions, beautiful people in tight costumes, and a few cute lines. It’s also bloated, overcrowded, choppy, illogical, and shallow.

In fact, this latest iteration of the Avengers’ world – the seventh film – is damn lucky it has such loyal fans. It’s also fortuitous that most of the other films were much more entertaining than this. Without these previous superpowers behind it, there’s no way Ultron would even make back its $250 million dollar budget.

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Screened Out – Lucy

By : Stephen Miller
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Scarlett Johansson, Morgan Freeman

Frenchman Luc Besson has been known for writing some really cool films and some pretty awful ones. His first hit was the awesome La Femme Nikita; he also made The Fifth Element, which is so cheesy it circles back to cool. We have him to thank for writing the mildly entertaining Transporter flicks, and we have him to blame for last year’s stinker The Family. Lucy, unfortunately, is another less-than-stellar show.

It starts out with a whiz-bang premise that gets even better in the first 20 minutes. Then, it starts to droop and sink under combined weight of pretention and cliché. Even the amazing visuals cannot stop its devolution into a preachy flick punctuated by pointless violence and shoot-outs.

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