Discriminated Hobbit Speaks Out
The media has had a frenzy with the latest news of The Hobbit’s casting director being fired due to “discriminatory” reasons, by announcing that a requirement for people auditioning to be a Hobbit extra was to be “light skinned.” It was the story and claims by Naz Humphrey, that sparked the news frenzy and eventually led to Studios making the decision to cut the casting director.
Since then, Humphreys has been mauled with media outlets trying to get the full story. As a response, she released the following statement:
I am extremely surprised by the media attention this story has received. And it has been quite an eye-opener to read some of the comments regarding this relatively trivial story that stray into attacks on racial, ethnic and gender equality in the wider workplace.
I would like to clarify and stress that I did not seek out or approach any media outlet with my story. I set up a Facebook group as a private joke about my experience at The Hobbit casting to share with some of my friends. A journalist came across the group and then called me. During our conversation I made clear that I did not want this to be a published story, but this was ignored.
The casting advert I responded to was published on Bebo and did not stipulate any racial or skin tone requirements. I went to the audition for fun, just like the rest of the hopefuls, and was merely annoyed at not being notified of all the requirements for the casting in the published advert. I understand that the film and theatre industries have legitimate reasons to hire performers whose appearance matches their role and I support their right to do so.
However, as The Hobbit production team has now made clear, no such instructions were specified by the Directors or the Film Studio in this instance. The production team has now kindly addressed this issue fully and I am very grateful for their intervention.
For my part, I have learned to take more care with my Facebook privacy settings to avoid starting a worldwide media phenomenon while chatting to my mates.
I would like to wish all the best to the Hobbit Production team in their endeavor and very much look forward to seeing The Hobbit movies, just like all the other fans around the world.
In other news, Hellboy sensation, Ron Perlman, commented in a recent interview that he was not going to do the Hobbit movies. When Guillermo Del Toro was signed on as Director, it was announced that Perlman would have an important role in the films. It seems, as that is not the case anymore. I would not completely rule him out, as many of GDT’s influences are still remaining in the film. Though Perlman may not be contracted as of now, that could definitely change in the near future.