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Shane Matlock
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Posted: 17 July 2019 at 11:41pm | IP Logged | 1 post reply

I'm okay with 007 being replaced by a woman. I wouldn't have been okay with a woman named James Bond, or Jane Bond, or whatever. But I would much rather see Ed Brubaker and Steve Epting's Velvet on a big screen where the main spy character is a woman from her inception. 
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Brian Hague
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Posted: 18 July 2019 at 2:43am | IP Logged | 2 post reply

This group of producers making this movie don't own the rights to Modesty Blaise. Or Lady Penelope. Or Velvet or Cherry Delight or the Miss From S.I.S. or Coffey or Lady Dynamite or anyone else you might care to offer up as a replacement. 

They own 007 and have cast the part with Lashana Lynch, because it was their role to cast. It was their movie to make and this is the one they chose. 

If any of you, Koroush, this offer extends to you specifically, if any of you want to option Modesty Blaise and cast the part with a black actress as a social experiment, please do so with all haste. I would love to see another head-to-head NEVER SAY NEVER AGAIN/OCTOPUSSY confrontation at the box office. That kind of thing doesn't happen often enough. 

Yeah, it'll be expensive and "Too hard," but really, you're seeking to preserve the dignity of entire races and genders here, by manfully protecting them from being given roles that, by all rights, ought to go to White men, right? You certainly would know better than Lashana Lynch, for example, whether or not they are being insulted with these starring roles in billion-dollar franchises.

Now I think what would be insulting to someone would be the intimation that they're being hired for "the wrong reasons," that they're headlining a tentpole franchise with more that 50 years of history behind it because of quotas and political niceties. I mean, it's not as if they've earned it, right? I think I'd be more insulted by that than by being given the starring role in a major motion picture. 

But no, you are their champion. You wish to save them from the degradation of scraps from the white man's table or somesuch idiocy, right? You are telling them to go to the back of the line, come up with their own franchise, and star in those films for 50 years before they can be said to have reached this point. How they must love you for your concern.

So, pony up, people. Let's see those greenbacks. Because the producers of 007 are putting their money where their mouths are. Yeah, let's face it; you're not going to make your cash back on a Modesty Blaise film, but it is the principle of the thing that counts here, is it not? And remember, according to Koroush, the man with the economics degree, making "more $$$" is a BAD thing.

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David Schmidt
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Posted: 18 July 2019 at 3:11am | IP Logged | 3 post reply

It's difficult to answer to that. Your great writing (and sarcasms) versus my poor english is a real challenge Brian but...

I think once JB said James Bond is a bad guy saving the world and I totally agree with him.

James Bond 007 is the main character of this movie series which are adaptation from books: he's a white killer, a mysoginist, a alcoholic, etc...
Making it "Jane Smith 007" is a curious way of going on with the franchise.

I discussed this topic with a few friends of mine. They all said to me that theydidn't really care about James Bond. They think it's not a character you can rely on and the franchise is not that interesting.

That is perhaps the real problem here... Isn't "James Bond 007" an outdated franchise?

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John Byrne
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Posted: 18 July 2019 at 5:59am | IP Logged | 4 post reply

I think once JB said James Bond is a bad guy saving the world...

•••

Not in this reality I didn’t.

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Brian Miller
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Posted: 18 July 2019 at 6:15am | IP Logged | 5 post reply

Yeah. Bond is definitely a good guy. In the novels, he certainly doesn’t care for the fact that having a 00 number comes with a license to kill. He has a specific distaste of killing in cold blood, also. 
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David Schmidt
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Posted: 18 July 2019 at 6:21am | IP Logged | 6 post reply

Not in this reality I didn’t.

I'm sorry. I misquoted you and I can't find the post I was refering to. My bad.
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David Schmidt
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Posted: 18 July 2019 at 6:38am | IP Logged | 7 post reply

Which is what “anti-hero” means. A “bad” person doing “good” things. (Think James Bond or Wolverine.)

That was the quote... And indeed that was not what I remembered.
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John Byrne
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Posted: 18 July 2019 at 7:17am | IP Logged | 8 post reply

Quotation marks always important.
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Koroush Ghazi
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Posted: 18 July 2019 at 10:07am | IP Logged | 9 post reply

 Brian Hague wrote:
...that they're headlining a tentpole franchise with more that 50 years of history behind it because of quotas and political niceties.


No. It's for a far less altruistic and less appropriate reason: because it's the easiest way for studios to make big bucks. If white supremacists become the majority in America tomorrow, the same studios would just as quickly produce a remake of Shaft starring a white guy as the lead, driving the General Lee through the streets of New York.

This sort of thing doesn't come from a good place Brian, and I'm not sure why you think that it's OK just because movie producers gots to get paid.


 Brian Hague wrote:
I mean, it's not as if they've earned it, right?


It's not a right you can "earn" through suffering and effort Brian. As hard as, say, an ethnic Chinese mother of three works all of her life, even becoming perhaps the best female actress of her generation, she will never "earn the right" to portray the next Batman for example. Even if you dress it up by saying she's taking on the mantle of Batman from Bruce Wayne. She's not Batman.

It is an inescapable result of centuries of paternalism and western dominance that the popular fictional characters of our time are mostly men, and white men at that. But we can't change that just by recasting them as women, or people of color, or both; that destroys the character, and it also sends the signal to minorities and the marginalized that they won't be accepted on their own terms.
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Rebecca Jansen
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Posted: 18 July 2019 at 10:34am | IP Logged | 10 post reply

I don't think there's anything morally wrong about wanting a fictional character to have some consistency and believability. I wouldn't want Modesty Blaise or Lady Penelope to grow beards (unless temporarily as part of a logical story). This is a bit different in that they are reassigning a number but it does smack of an attention getting stunt that seems to be a current trend (post zombie trend, post vampire, post apes, now it's make them a fill-in-the-blank). C'mon, empowerment? With hand-me-downs? Look at the black characters re-using something pre-existing that failed: Black Goliath, Invisible Kid, Mr. terrific... compare to the ones that succeeded best: Black Panther, Luke Cage/Power Man and Black Lightning. So, how does re-using something last? Not very. Remember Sherlock Holmes as a woman? Not that many do.

I'm, not a James Bond fan or even a Girl From U.N.C.L.E. fan, but I grew up with Supergirl and to a lesser extent Mary Marvel, you might say they were the earlier brand of female knock-offs but they didn't replace Superman or the original Captain Marvel with them. Powergirl was Supergirl standing more on her own in the '70s but I mostly just saw cleavage and simplistic petulance in her attitude, whatta mess (sorry Gerry Conway, but thanks Wally Wood for at least drawing her less obviously sexist which is a bit ironic being Wood).

I think it would be cooler and more sustainable to have a character who stands more on her own while still maintaining the brand, and so maybe she won't 'have to' die (boy am I not empowered by the deaths of female characters) and can stay on as her own 'licensed to kill' number? This war of the sexes stuff just seems silly to me. I am going to go with what is best long term for sustainability and believability. I just react to this one as with many others as: publicity gimmick. Serious arguments about James Bond stories are a bit like over-analysis of Space: 1999 Year Two... doesn't really work, and that's how I feel about a black woman 007 if she were a replacement that kept the number. But it doesn't seem like she does anyway, so it's all much publicity about something not all that imaginative. I'll rewatch Mulan and Lilo & Stitch I think. :^)
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John Byrne
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Posted: 18 July 2019 at 11:28am | IP Logged | 11 post reply

Thru-out my career I have made a habit of casting minorities as authority figures. Doctors, judges, cops, legislators—I even beat reality with a Black President in GENERATIONS*

It’s not hard, and I’ve been complimented by people of color for doing it.

(“People of Color” is a currently acceptable phrase that makes me really uncomfortable. When I was in my formative years, “colored” was a term of disparagement, as was “black.”)

—————

* You are forgiven it you didn’t notice. By clumsily altering the punctuation in a transitional caption, the editor made it uncertain who was speaking.

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Adam Schulman
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Posted: 18 July 2019 at 12:25pm | IP Logged | 12 post reply

I don't like the phrase "people of color" either. I just not sure what would be a better phrase.
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