We've been following updates to the casting of Spike Lee's version of Oldboy pretty closely, and a recently revealed casting call sheds some light on more of the film's roles. A few days ago the Angry Asian Man blog got its hands on the list, which reveals a slew of character names and descriptions, some of which prompted people to call the adaptation's diversity into question.
Here's the rundown from the casting call, typos intact:
[WALLACE SHARKEY] Male, 60ish, Caucasian. Joe's well-tailored, slickster boss.
[DONNA HAWTHORNE] Female, Mid 20s, Caucasian. Joe's ex-wife and mother of Mia. Once a homecoming queen, now a stripped down hardworking single mom.
[DAVE BERMAN] Mid 40s to 50s. African-American. Shlubby, but very welthy businessman. Joe hits on his much younger girlfriend.
[ASIAN WOMAN] Female, Early to mid 20s, Asian. A mysterious exotic beauty sitting at the bar observing Joe. MARTIAL ARTS EXPERIENCE A PLUS
[CHUCKY] Male, Mid 40s, Caucasian. A free spirited likeable human teddy bear who sports loud vintage Hawaiian shirts. Joe’s best friend.
[BROWNING] Male. Caucasian. Small in stature. A career criminal with pockmarked skin.
[CORTEZ] Latin male. 50s. A bullishly strong street thug/criminal.
[JAKE PRESTON] Male, Mid 30s to mid 40s, Caucasian. A clean cut tough looking former cop; the no-nonsense host of the TV show "Unsolved Crimes."
[ADULT MIA] Female, Early 20s, Caucasian. A musical prodigy on cello. Sensitive, intelligent, beautiful but humble. CELLO EXPERIENCE A PLUS.
[GRACE] Female, 50s, African American. A drug addicted nutcase in the Mobile Hospital.
[JOHNNY] Male, Mid 40s to 50s, Caucasian. A disheveled, schizophrenic man who is on the street near the Mobile Hospital unit.
[A BURLY MAN] Male, 40s, Caucasian. Muscular and serious with close-cropped hair.
[THE CHECKPOINT] Male, 40s, Open Ethnicity. A serious looking sort (probably trying to hold down two or three jobs to support his family) who is sitting at a desk in the underground parking garage.
[EDWINA BURKE] Female, Late 50s to early 60s, Caucasian, distinguished-looking. She is from Evergreen Academy where Joe attended school. She is tough, smart, and very much a lady, but a lonely one.
[SECURITY GUARD] Male, 40s to 50s, Caucasian. The guard at Evergreen Academy that patrols the grounds and takes his job a bit more seriously than he needs to.
[AMANDA PRYCE] Female, 14, Caucasian. Adrian's younger sister. She is pretty, yet shy and a bit awkward-looking.
[YOUNG JOE DOUCETTE] Male, 17, Caucasian. A young Josh Brolin.
An example of the questions and concerns sent Spike Lee's way: One tweeted, "@SpikeLee What's up w/ most of the important roles in Oldboy remake asking 4 Caucasians…"
Spike Lee responded:
Spike Lee then promptly responded to another bit of concern from Racebending.com:
Oldboy is based on the manga by Garon Tsuchiya and Nobuaki Minegishi, and was previously adapted into live-action by director Chan-wook Park (Sympathy for Mr. Vengeance, Thirst). It follows a man who is freed after being incarcerated for a decade. He sets out to find the people behind his imprisonment, as well as the reasons behind it. Spike Lee's adaptation is set to start shooting in New Orleans this October.
Via Comic Book Movie