John Leguizamo Blasts James Franco’s Casting As Fidel Castro: ‘He Ain’t Latino!’
Leguizamo, who voiced Bruno in the Disney film Encanto, took to Instagram Friday, saying the role should have gone to a Latino actor instead.
“How is this still going on?” questioned Leguizamo. “How is Hollywood excluding us but stealing our narratives as well? No more appropriation Hollywood and streamers! Boycott! This F’d up! Plus seriously harrowing story to tell without aggrandizement which would b wrong! I don’t got a prob with Franco but he ain’t Latino!”
Other Latino stars also expressed their anger over the casting of Franco.
“Wtf is this….” wrote actress Jess Darrow, who voiced Luisa Madrigal in Encanto, in the comments of Leguizamo’s post.
“Not me reading that James Franco will have to “build” an accent for Castro, when my entire life I’ve been made fun of for not speaking English like an American and been told countless times to work hard to get rid of it,” tweeted actress Sol Rodriguez.
“I’m auditioning for another generic Latin-American drug dealer and James Franco is dead ass playing Fidel Castro,” wrote actor Jeff Torres. “Latinos gettin’ done dirty af out here and everywhere. Damn lol”
Franco is slated to play Castro in the film Alina of Cuba, following the life of Alina Fernandes, Castro’s daughter.
The underrepresentation of Latinos in the film industry has been an issue in Hollywood for its entire history. While Latinos make up 18% of the population, only 4.6% of movie roles went to Latino actors and actresses.
Franco is also in the midst of allegations of inappropriate and sexually exploitive behavior in 2018 from five women, most being his students. In 2021, he admitted to sleeping with students who attended the acting school he co-owned.
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