Stereotypical and racially offensive displays of blackface continue to pop up in the entertainment industry. Just this week, on Wednesday (August 1), Common called out actor and director Seth Rogan for darkening the skin of a child actor for a movie role.
“Even trying to paint somebody darker to fit somebody else, I mean – what sense does that make?” Common told TMZ. “I’m not with it at all.”
Common continued, “Painting somebody darker? Come on man, it’s 2018. When is that ever acceptable? If I am a Black person on that set, I’m offended. And even honestly, I think a white person should be able to step up and say this…There should be white and Black people standing up for when you see some bulls— going on.”
Rogan agreed to use dark makeup on a Black child actor and to place him in a fat suit for the upcoming film, “Good Boys.” The actor was a stand-in for lead star Keith L. Williams who weighs more and is darker-skinned, TMZ reported.
A person on set filed a complaint because of the decision — shining a light on the ugly history of blackface being used in minstrelsy to humiliate, degrade and dehumanize African Americans. Minstrelsy, which dates back to the early 1800s, featured the comedic performances of whites who wore outlandish makeup and over-the-top costumes, mocking and distorting the physical attributes of African Americans for sport.
Rogen has since apologized for using blackface. Still, anyone who would ever think it is acceptable under any circumstances needs a lesson on the painful history of racism in America.