Disney and Pixar’s first Black-led film ‘Soul’ hit the Disney+ streaming service on Christmas Day to excellent reviews.
While many have found the film to be a breath of fresh-air, others are criticizing the film for Tina Fey’s role as 22.
via Page Six:
The groundbreaking animated movie, which feature’s the studio’s first African American protagonist, follows middle school jazz teacher Joe Gardner (played by Jamie Foxx), whose untimely death prompts him to embark on a posthumous pilgrimage to recover his lost soul.
Along the way, Joe helps a disillusioned spirit named 22 (played by Fey) rediscover her reason for living — and in the process gains a greater understanding of what it means to be alive.
Needless to say, Fey’s casting came under fire from the always outspoken Twitterati, who felt the pivotal role should have gone to a black actor or actress.
“Yea casting Tina Fey as 22 in Soul did not do it for me, 22 should’ve been voiced by a black boy instead,” scoffed one social media watchdog.
Another wrote, “I think they should’ve gotten Regina King or Tiffany Haddish to voice Tina Fey’s character instead.”
Some viewers were especially divided over the long stretch of the film where Fey’s voice commandeers Gardner’s body a la “Freaky Friday.”
“The studio’s first Black Protagonist needed the soul of a middle-aged white woman to get his life on track,” snarked one critic of the cinematic white savior-ism. “Thank you for being mindful of ‘racist imagery.’ Wheww…”
Another griped, “The inclusion of Tina Fey for the body-swap bits and not a predominately Black comedian feels a lot like someone said ‘We dont want to alienate our white audience’… …and I’m even more disappointed by the film because of it.
We watched ‘Soul’ and loved the film — but is the criticism valid? What do you think, love muffins?