Pedro Pascal Says Hollywood Should Blind Cast for Better Representation, Asks Not To Limit Characters to ‘Racial Identity’
Pedro Pascal has quickly become America’s Sweetheart — and our favorite daddy.
Whether the Chilean star is making audiences swoon as queer icon, Oberyn Martell on “Game of Thrones.” Or most recently, as zombie-slaying Joel in “The Last of Us,” Pascal has proved that he’s got nothing if not range — and undoubtedly, tons of rizz.
Now, the actor will star alongside Ethan Hawke in a queer Cowboy Western titled “Strange Way of Life.” Even better? It’s coming from the fascinating mind of Spanish director, Pedro Almodovar.
The film seems to be the beautiful lovechild of “Brokeback Mountain” and “Once Upon a Time in Mexico,” making our fangirl dreams come true.
It’s clear that Pascal chooses his roles fearlessly. But how do gender, cultural and racial identity factor in? In a recent interview, Pascal discussed the importance of representation and his approach to delivering a memorable on-screen performance, no matter what kind of character he’s playing.
When it comes to representing, Pascal definitely understands the assignment
As the “Mandalorian” actor reflected on his past performances, especially the ones in which he portrayed LGBTQ+ characters, his aim is always to do the work and rise to the occasion. He said, “I want to be able to fulfill the assignment and continue to fulfill the assignment.”
Pascal was a public advocate of his sister, Lux, who came out as transgendered in 2021. He has also fortified his relationship toward advocacy and playing underrepresented characters. On the nuance of working on such a project, he said, “It’s not necessarily about getting an ‘A’ but understanding someone’s vision and being a scene partner for somebody.”
This is evident in the relationship between Joel and Ellie on “The Last of Us,” with Ellie being played by non-binary actor Bella Ramsey. Their sweet father-daughter on-screen chemistry kept many of us watching. Even as the fungi monsters threatened to ruin mushrooms for us forever.
Pascal believes “blind casting” is the best way to normalize representation
As an actor who has played everything from Prince of Dorne to alien gunfighter, he knows a thing or two about playing diverse roles. When asked about Hollywood’s issues with typecasting and underrepresentation, he offered a solution: blind casting.
Stating, “I think that the change is really important and that the best way to continue representation is just casting a person into a role that isn’t limiting a character to racial identity.”
Making our own rules is key to representation
Pascal warned against casting actors of specific racial backgrounds, even if the project in question involves a historical figure we’re familiar with, a book adaption with pre-conceived characters, or anything of the sort.
He shared, “People get so butthurt about this kind of stuff, but who cares? Because […] the coolest way of moving the needle is being open about the casting in every way.” We didn’t think it could be possible, but we may actually love Pedro Pascal just a bit more.
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