Amid backlash for signing onto play a transgender man in Rub & Tug, Scarlett Johansson has officially decided to quit from the project.
After it was reported that the Black Widow actress was chosen to play Dante "Tex" Gill,
several media experts and LGBT community members took to social media networks to share their opinion. Tex was a transgender man who ran an underground sex industry in Pittsburg during the 1970s. Sense8 actress Jamie Clayton talked about the problems transgenders face in the movie industry. Others even accused the actress of stealing jobs from everyone.
In a statement to Out.com, the Avengers movie actress opened up about the recent criticism she had faced. Following the ethical questions raised against her casting as Dante Tex Gill, she has decided to withdraw her participation from the project.
"Our cultural understanding of transgender people continues to advance, and I've learned a lot from the community since making my first statement about my casting and realize it was insensitive," Johansson added.
The 33-year-old Johansson further stated that she would have loved to play such a challenging role. She acknowledged that the recent outrage has opened a path for a broader conversation about transgender actors in the entertainment industry.
"I understand why many feel he should be portrayed by a transgender person, and I am thankful that this casting debate, albeit controversial, has sparked a larger conversation about diversity and representation in film."
Johansson's decision to part ways with the film received appreciation from LGBT supporters. Many even took to Twitter to spread the news.
To exhibit the spirit of generosity I earnestly want to see more of, I am going to take Scarlett Johansson at her word that she listened to feedback, realized that despite her intentions this was going to cause harm, and made the right decision to step down. Well done.— Jen Richards (@SmartAssJen) July 13, 2018
What's honestly most shocking to us about the Scarlett Johansson thing is that the outrage WORKED. For one brief second and in this small way, the concerns of trans people made a difference to Hollywood.— Irenes (many) (@ireneista) July 14, 2018
Keep pushing. Never give up. You never know how close you are to success.
Actress Rain Valdez was moved to tears after she got to know Johansson's decision. She said, "It says a lot about Scarlett Johansson. That actually makes me a little emotional because it's not an easy industry for trans women. It's not an easy industry for trans men."
That being said, Deadline reported that the film is co-produced between Silver Pictures, Tobey Maguire's Material Pictures, and Johansson's These Pictures banners on a budget of $30 million. As of now, it is unclear whether the actress has also withdrawn as a co-producer of the film.