Pressed to pick out a celebrity who might typify the Madewell girl, Mau chose Kate Bosworth and Rachel Bilson. This does not entirely jibe with my mental picture of my tough immigrant great-grandfather selling stiff denim overalls to New England dockworkers.
The top two debuts of the fall season so far among viewers under 50 are ABC’s Black-ish and How to Get Away With Murder. Both feature African-American leads. Perhaps network and studio casting directors will keep this in mind next spring.
Last year, a New Orleans college student awoke nude in a public place, disoriented and fearing she had been drugged and raped. Emergency officials responded to the scene and urged her to let them take her to the hospital.
She hesitated. She just wanted to go home. She also worried the hospital charges would appear on insurance statements and alarm her parents, whose health plan she was on. But, she said, the responders convinced her there would be no charge.
A year later, a letter appeared in her campus mailbox informing her that she owed $2,254.
The main reason I’d been hesitant to see A Mighty Heart is the casting of Angelina Jolie. Nothing against her as an actress, but having a white actress play a mixed-race woman continues a long history of “whitewashing” in film. Jolie does a fine job here, mimicing well Mariane Pearl’s French accent and cadence. She plays Mariane as contained and determined during the search, then fierce and raw when she receives the tragic news of her husband’s death. Logically I know that if Jolie hadn’t been involved, the movie might not have ever received wide release. Yet I couldn’t help wondering what qualities an actress of color might have brought to the role.