Actress Zoe Kravitz is opening up about the obstacles she’s faced in Hollywood over the years in her career. The actress has candidly talked about the prejudice that exists in the movie industry and the racial stereotyping that is holding back opportunity in motion pictures.
Racial equality and many other issues that remain present in 2017 are being highlighted by Kravitz’s candour, and many are surprised that – despite her skill as an actress and her famous last name – she continues to face barriers in her work.
Recently Kravitz sat down and shared her experiences and discussed the lack of opportunity when it comes to landing roles. “When my name is brought up in a casting office, I’m sure the fact that I’m black comes up in discussions,” she told The Edit.
Typically with roles that are written for Black women, it’s often assumed that they are married to Black men and written to act a certain way: just a few are the “Angry Black Woman”, the “Jezebel”, or the token “Black Best Friend”.
When asked to play the role of such women, Kravitz shares her concerns. She explains that the directors’ thinking is “compartmentalised” and goes on to explain how this makes her feel alienated.
When arriving in Miami as a young woman she was surrounded by “hot blonde girls with boobs and Louis Vuitton purses ”; as a mixed race girl “with crazy kinky hair” Kravitz felt she didn’t relate to the society and culture around her. Once told that her look was “too urban”, this cost the star a shot at a superhero franchise role (in the Batman sequel, The Dark Knight). “I’m sure [a similar thing] would still happen now” she goes on to say confidently to the mag, discussing how little the industry has changed.
The out-of-place and unwanted scenarios that have played out for Kravitz are incredibly relatable to those dealing with a similar form of alienation. As such the talented star has continued to talk about these issues and is using her platform to bring light to them.
With many professionals turning a blind eye to the ugly politics of the entertainment industry, the conversations are now more than ever needed by those such as Kravitz. Zoe is continuing the conversation about the lack of opportunity in Hollywood, supporting the idea that professionals with equally talented acting chops should be presented with an equal opportunity of roles – something which can be applied to all professions in all walks of life.
Words: Dilpreet Taak
The UK's first Career & Lifestyle Magazine for women in the Creative and Media industries.