Many stars may oppose the Oscars’ new diversity rule. They are just afraid to say it out loud.
Actors know that professional feedback can be substantial for sharing that opinion.
Are not Richard Dreyfuss.
The Oscar-winning star of “Jaws,” “What About Bob?” and other beloved movies are not afraid to plunge into the subject.
Starting next year, a film must tick the selected boxes to be eligible for the Best Picture golden statuette. That could mean telling a story that is “inclusive” or having enough people of color in the cast and/or crew.
Dreyfuss spoke to PBS host Margaret Hoover on her show “Firing Line” on Friday about a variety of issues, including measures of Oscar diversity.
Suffice it to say that he completely disagrees with this policy.
“They made me vomit,” says Dreyfuss. “This is an art form… no one should tell me as an artist that I have to give in to the newest, most modern idea of what morality is.”
Dreyfuss frequently shares conflicting views with the progressive worldview. He is also eager to speak with people of different ideological lines, including right-wing speaker Dave Rubin.
The actor talked about another, even more controversial issue in the chat. That exchange can have the most serious professional consequences.
Dreyfuss praises Laurence Olivier’s 1965 performance, performed in blackface, of “Othello” for the 1965 film
“Am I told that I will never get the chance to play a Negro?” Dreyfuss asked. “Are we crazy? Don’t we know that art is art?”
Hoover pressed him on the matter, noting the brutal history of black people in America’s past and how that complicates the roles an actor can take.
Dreyfuss called such talk “provocative,” adding that there should be no difference between an actor playing a member of one group or another.
“Firing Line with Margaret Hoover” airs at 8:30 p.m. on PBS stations and via YouTube.
“I think we’re in the final stages now.”
Performer @RichardDreyfuss discusses restoring civic education and his fears for the nation’s future. Plus, he reacts to Hollywood’s new inclusion standards: “They make me vomit.”
– Shot Line with Margaret Hoover (@FiringLineShow) May 5, 2023