Another mafioso role for me. This time I played the head of Smoke Enders, using Mafia techniques to make people quit smoking
. Dino De Laurentiis, the producer, had seen me impersonate wise guys in other movies, and he swore I was Italian. "No, I'm Jewish."
"Unh-huh. You gotta be Italian, you got every gesture. Maybe your grandfather?"
"No, my grandfather was Jewish, from Russia."
He simply would not take my word for it.
—Alan King on Cat's Eye (1985), Name Dropping
I'm a very, very, very Italian girl. My grandmother was a letter-bride, came over when she was 15; my grandfather came over, built railroads; I went to school in Italy; I speak
Italian; I lived
there '81-'85; my first husband...I'm as Italian as you can get, and I have never
gotten offered or even considered for an Italian part! Because I don't act
like what everybody thinks an Italian person acts like! Cathy Moriarty:
I'm not even Italian; I'm full-blooded Irish and I always get cast as Italian. D'Angelo:
I would KILL for an Italian role!
In The Reader
, English, plays a German, nominated.
In Tropic Thunder
, Robert Downey, Jr.
, who was an American, playing an Australian, playing an African-American, nominated.
I'm an Australian, playing an Australian in a movie called Australia
I started out on Broadway in the original production of Yentl
and won awards for it, and then when the move came out with Barbra Streisand
they said, 'We wanna do it authentically, we wanna put all-Jewish people in the cast'....I went, 'I just did it for a year on Broadway!', and they said,'We don't care!
Yes, 'Aram Fingal' from San Juan, Puerto Rico.
I'm starting to get the feeling that Suki Yaki's actor, George Stone
, isn't really Japanese.
The Steven Seagal
of today is a bloated cartoon-Buddhist in a buttoned-up circus tent, a spiritual blues warrior, shilling his own-brand energy drink and raving about how Obama should be impeached. He's the ultimate in yellowface
, clad in velvet and claiming to be a reincarnated 17th century Tibetan Lama
...With its cultural links to the colourful world of organised crime, Seagal is vocally proud of his Italian heritage, despite his Irish mother and Jewish father, and has an Asian grandmother on his father's side, lineage he deduced from a photograph Ė ďAll I have is a picture of my fatherís family, and theyÖ got pretty slanted eyes. And Asian clothes. I donít know what they are. But something Asian.Ē
—Stuart Millard, Smoke & Mirrors and Steven Seagal
: To be fair, itís pretty understandable why Liu Kang would think that Raiden was a fraud, since most Japanese thunder gods donít tend to look like French dudes. Matt
: Raiden was born in the United States, educated in the Swiss Alps, and then moved to Japan to become a god. Makes perfect sense.
So yes, our Cuban gangsters are currently being played by the priest from The Amityville Horror
and Julia Robertsí brother. Making this even more glaring is that all the other bad guys in the film (with the exception of Ned) are played by actual Latinos. I guess Edward James Olmos and Andy Garcia were busy that year.
Most of the reason for the mockery is for Nic Cage
and his over the top Italian accent. 'BELLA BAMBINA AT TWO O CLOCK!
' You know, I donít begrudge an actor who knows he canít do a dignified job with an accent and just speaks English. In fact, I admire him. Itís when we get attempts like this that we really laugh
. I kept expecting Nic to exclaim 'Thatís a spicy meat-a-ball!
' at the end of every line.
David Carradine is Elvis
of kung fu, having the honorable distinction of helping to pioneer western martial arts movies only by virtue of blatant racism. He is most famous for playing the lead in the 1970s kung fu serial, creatively titled Kung Fu
, winning the part from Bruce Lee
, even though Lee helped create the show for the sole purpose of acting in it. Apparently no one told Bruce that at that time Chinese people were considered 'too Chinese' to play Chinese people.
I will say one thing negative about Boreanazís otherwise stellar performance, and that is his Irish accent needs some more work and is barely comprehensible at times (although this isnít entirely untrue
of Irish enunciation).
is British, Jean-Luc Picard is French. That said, heís played straightforwardly in an English accent, and the constant sense is that Gene Roddenberry may have had a somewhat hazy
sense of the fact that there was a material difference.