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Dustin Lance Black slams Hollywood over their refusal to cast trans actors

2017-02-04
Former Attitude cover model Dustin Lance Black has slammed Hollywood over their claim that casting transgender actors is "difficult." Black's upcoming miniseries When We Rise includes real transgender actors playing transgender roles. The series, which premieres February 27,  charts the struggle of four LGBT+ activists, including Cleve Jones who worked as an intern for Harvey Milk, over five decades. In a new interview with Pride Source, Black reveals it wasn't hard to find transgender actors for his series. "What was difficult was deciding who to cast because so many great tapes came in. So, I call bullsh*t on Hollywood if they say it's difficult. And if they think it's difficult, then they should call our casting directors because they found unbelievable trans actors and actresses, and it was actually tough to decide who to cast." The screenwriter, who is currently writing a memoir, states that when casting, he looks for someone who can "bring a part of their experience" to the role. "They still have to be a great actor, so if I can't find anyone in the world who share some experience that they're about to portray in this character, who's also a good actor, then I'll happily go for someone else." "Years ago, it was difficult to find openly gay actors to play openly gay roles - that was difficult." Black recalls the troubles he underwent while trying to find LGBT actors for his award winning film, Milk. "When we were doing Milk, that's what we wanted to do, and the studio gave us full permission to do that. So, we called agents and manager friends and they all said they didn't have any gay actors or actresses, which is funny since I knew some of their clients were gay!" "It was very frustrating, but thankfully that's begun to change as well, particularly in this young generation of actors and actresses who, in one way or another, have come out on social media when they were kids and there's no putting them back in the closet in today's social media age." You can read the full interview with Black over at Pride Source. More stories: How Instagram became the new gay cruising ground ‘There’s more to me than just a body’ – Tom Daley dives into Attitude’s body issue