John Leguizamo has criticized the decision to cast American actor James Franco as Cuban revolutionary Fidel Castro in an upcoming film.
It was revealed earlier this week that Franco, 44, will play Castro in indie project Alina de Cuba, and Lequizamo, 62, took to his Instagram on Friday to speak out on the casting choice.
‘How’s it going again? How does Hollywood exclude us but also steal our stories? Leguizamo began his rant, which received nearly 10,000 likes.
‘No more Hollywood and streamer appropriation! Boycott! This F’d up! Moreover, a seriously difficult story to tell without enlargement, which would be wrong! »
‘It’s not a Latino!’ John Leguizamo slams decision to cast James Franco as Fidel Castro, urges fans to boycott film for ‘appropriation’
Adding: “I don’t have a problem with Franco but he’s not a Latino!”
View co-host Ana Navarro then commented below the post, telling Leguizamo that she would “join him” in boycotting the film.
Navarro wrote, “I’d like to think no Latino actor worth his salt would sign up to play and elevate a murderous dictator who terrorized the Cuban people for six decades.” For the two reasons you have stated, I join you in the boycott.’
Role: It was revealed earlier this week that Franco, 44, will play Castro in indie project Alina of Cuba (Picture; 2010)
Franco is set to appear in the film directed by Spanish director Miguel Bardem.
The Oscar-nominated actor will be joined in the cast by actress Mía Maestro, 47, who will play socialite Natalia “Naty” Revuelta, who was Castro’s former mistress, Deadline reported Thursday.
The pair join actress Ana Villafañe, 33, in the cast, as she stars as Alina Fernandez – Castro and Revuelta’s daughter – in the film.
The film – whose screenplay was written by Jose Rivera and Nilo Cruz – will describe the life story of Fernandez, a Cuban exile and social activist.
When she was 10 years old, Fernandez found out she was Castro’s daughter, as her mother revealed the truth to her after Castro had secretly visited the family home for years. Revuelta had given her and her doctor husband the wealth to fund the early stages of the communist revolution.
Fernandez eventually became an anti-communist activist who was repeatedly arrested for her attempts to leave Cuba and banned from traveling outside the country. Fernandez in 1993 defected to Spain and eventually settled in Miami.
Filming for the film will begin Aug. 15 in the Colombian cities of Cartagena and Bogota, according to the outlet.
Rant: Leguizamo hit out on his official Instagram account on Friday
Latest: James Franco, 44, has been cast as late Cuban leader Fidel Castro in director Miguel Bardem’s upcoming film Aline de Cuba. The actor was photographed in Italy in June
Producer John Martinez O’Felan told Deadline that “Finding and convincing James Franco to play Castro was a fun and challenging process and was the collaborative work of the universe, as our director’s initial order was to find a actor who has a close physique”. resemblance to the real Castro from which to build, while finding someone Alina Fernandez would strongly approve of.
“To get there on such a hard-to-cast look, we used Fidel Castro’s ancient Galician heraldry as a focal compass, then combed through the ranks of Latino-rooted actors in Hollywood to find someone who has a similar facial structure.”
O’Felan said that after extensive research “in our hopes through the eye of the Spanish and Portuguese genealogy which the Galicians held”, Franco was found to have “the closest facial resemblance to the principal actors of our industry, which means the focus would be on developing his character accent and we’d have a great on-screen match to intrigue audiences and bring the story to life with true visual integrity.
He said casting Villafañe and Maestro “was a no-brainer because, besides the trajectory of their past work, one represents modern Cuban America and the other Argentina.”
O’Felan told the outlet that the goal of the project was to “produce an artistic piece of modern Hispanic history, with the vision of the project as being truly inclusive by bringing together actors and creatives from cross-generational Latin roots and recent news from the United States, Latin America and the world.