Are American Men Too Wimpy to Play Superheroes?
An answer to some statements made by Hollywood movie-makers!
A few days ago, articles had revealed some bad statements made by a Hollywood movie-maker and a United Talent Agent. The quotes are as follows:
The Dark Knight and The Dark Knight Rises casting director John Papsidera, said: "The ugly truth is that American leading men just aren't terribly manly anymore. You look at the list of American leading men, and in their twenties and thirties, they're very boylike. Take Jesse Eisenberg: I put him in Zombieland, but he's not going to play Superman. He's much closer to what Dustin Hoffman turned into than John Wayne or Steve McQueen. It's hard to find movie stars that live up to the needs of the story. Leo [DiCaprio] is growing into it, but for a long time, he seemed young and boylike. Inception was the first time Leo seemed to have fully grown into a man. You need to find guys who carry that heroic-ness with them."
And, speaking about Canadian, the English and Australia men, Papsidera added: "There, they're still raised as men. Heath [Ledger] was a man's man. Guys like Henry Cavill, there's an easy masculinity to them. But because of how predominant the sixties and the women's movement were here, guys in America talk about their 'feelings' far more than guys from New Zealand and Australia or Ireland."
United Talent agent Louise Ward also adds: "I believe there's been a certain feminization of the American male. As a result, there are a lot of 'mama's boys.' Kids are raised like veal. We're afraid to let them play soccer. That kind of nurturing softens what we're used to seeing on the screen. American men aren't men on the screen."
Now, I think that it would have been better to state that some, if not a lot, of American male ACTORS are like this, rather than American men in general – because they didn’t make a separation in their conclusions! The truth is that Hollywood is filled with men [not all of them] who don’t act manly – and that’s no secret to anybody! And if the statements would have stopped there only, then I would have agreed. And, hey, the hippie movement didn’t disrupt the growth of all men, either, because American men, in the broadest sense, are certainly manly men, and movie-makers who make such statements as these seem to forget that the people they cast for their movies are actors – which means that they are ACTING manly, and doesn’t necessarily mean that they ARE manly: no matter which country they come from! And by making such statements (and especially representing an American based company to begin with) gives open channels for reproach and ridicule toward a great country.
However, and at the same time, I can certainly see where feminist ideas are spread amongst many American males. But this doesn’t stop in America alone, for there are men of this caliber in every nation of the world!
American soldier (turned actor) Audie Murphy (the most decorated hero of WW2) was a perfect example of a manly man who may not have looked manly ~ for he almost looked like a kid! But when it came to his exploits on the battle field, next to the fictional Captain America himself, he proved to be the toughest America had during that terrible war! So, if we are basing manliness on looks only, then we are truly in a world of fantasy! After all, the people making statements need to narrow their meanings down when it comes to judging men in general of an entire nation. I don’t believe for one moment that the majority of America men are nothing more than momma’s boys! If you want to see some American heroes, look no further than the men of the American armed forces! And just because they aren’t jumping around on a big screen wearing tights, doesn’t mean in the least that they aren’t manly! Not only this, but also, while looking elsewhere than just Hollywood, real men can also be found saving lives everyday, such as America’s firefighters . . . can we call them wimpy?
Again, Audie Murphy proved that you can take a real manly hero and turn him into an actor – and the same can be done today! And it has been proven time and again that you can take many people out of society and make them an acting star: just take famous athletes and singers for examples ~ it doesn’t just have to be people who are especially wanting to be actors in the first place. Hollywood, don’t be so near-sighted; if you’d take the time to look around, you will see some real American manly men!
And, speaking of American manly men, let’s look at one American actor in general, who just so happens to be portraying the manliest superhero of the Marvel universe ~ Chris Evans as Captain America! Other American manly actors of note (of different ages, but still heroic in roles) are: Robert Downy, Jr (Iron Man); Samuel L. Jackson (Nick Fury); Brad Pitt (Achilles); and Will Smith (Hancock).
And, now, just to set the record straight, for I know that you are just dying to know, I am NOT against any other country or their actors! If they are good, I welcome them whole-heartedly! I think the choice for Thor is marvelous! And how much more manly can you get that the non-American choice for Wolverine! I wouldn’t change that actor for anything!
I think that we could have done without such harsh statements, and would have been satisfied just to hear that there was better choices in acting ability; or that a British actor was just a better choice for the role of Superman (or whomever), without getting into any insulting mumbo-jumbo! And, if there is truly a short supply of American manly men in Hollywood, well then, let’s do something about it ~ and hire some more!
Superheroes should belong to the world, and not just America ~ but Americans should be as much a part of it as anybody else! That being said, I’m ready to give this British actor a chance at playing an American Superman . . . one thing only, please use an American and not a British accent ~ it would kind of ruin the effect!
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