John Barrowman Thinks Casting Agents Should be Deaf, Dumb and Mostly Blind


John Barrowman Thinks Casting Agents Should be Deaf, Dumb and Mostly Blind


By Jeremy Bamidele

Science fiction, fantasy, and in lesser cases horror films have been ahead of their times in addressing social issues. This is partly due to their ability to disassociate themselves from the normalcy of reality. In fantasy, racial wars and prejudices are John Barrowman, addressing social issues, fantasy and realityrepresented through orc vs. elves. Such disassociations allow them to seriously address issues while lessening the offense of the subject matter to its audience.


For a rare few, the three (sci-fi, fantasy, and horror) is more than fantasy, its unrealized possibilities. The inability to separate fantasy from reality has dangerous consequences as displayed by the tragedy in Orlando, Florida where gay bar patrons were the targets of a massacre that took the lives of 49 people.


I spoke with Sci-fi actor John Barrowman (from Dr. Who, Flash, and Arrow) about his opinions on what could be done in the entertainment world to prevent things like this happening again. He was quick to respond that greater representation of minorities and those with cross-sectional identities would not have prevented the “asshole” from doing what he did.


He did however, point to the importance of the entertainment community to provide,


“Enough diversity to no longer make people feel that because of religious beliefs that they are wrong because of who they are and who they love.  That’s what I think is the most important thing.”


He then went on to praise and support those who carry out blind castings in the entertainment industry. And in addition, he thinks casting agents should also be deaf, and dumb to stereotypical images to increase cinematic opportunities.


Blind castings are when people are allowed to play roles where their physical characteristics don’t perfectly align with the character as originally written. This can be seen in the recently televised version of the Wizard of Oz. Blind castings often run counter to prejudicial and pigeonholing perceptions of people and characters. It says in subtle ways, you matter and we include you.


“We should allow people to be who they are and that may have helped this man, nutcase, who did what he did.”


Inclusion is of paramount importance. Those without a community often continue searching, which can lead them to find communities that runs counter to the common good. At the extremes it can lead people to even turn on their original community that they feel slighted by.


When a cosplayer, someone who dresses up as characters, was questioned about what separates those who love to watch violence on screen vs. those who choose to enact violence in real life, he replied,


“A lot of psychological problems.”


“You have to know when to act on something and when not to act on something.”


“I don’t like the Yankees. I don’t beat up every Yankee fan wearing a t-shirt that says ‘I love the Yankees.’ I mean basically you have to keep your dream life and your real life separate.”


Watch the Interview with John Barrowman below.


Watch the interview with a cosplayer below.




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