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Playing With / Race Lift

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Basic Trope: A character is played by someone of a different ethnicity from them in the adaptation.

  • Straight: Bob is described as black in the novel Troper City, but is played by a white actor in Troper City: The Movie.
  • Exaggerated: Everyone in the book undergoes an ethnicity lift in the film — not only does the black Bob get played by a white guy, but the white Alice gets played by an East Asian woman, the Latina Carla is played by a white woman, etc.
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  • Downplayed: Bob is black in the book, but is biracial in the film, with his black roots from the book intact and prominent.
  • Justified: A Setting Update in the adaptation makes the story more plausible if the actors were played by different ethnicities.
  • Inverted: The original film had Bob played by a white actor in Black Face. Given that it is incredibly unacceptable now the remake has him played by an actual black actor and given a more serious role.
  • Subverted: The white guy advertised as playing Bob in the film winds up being a disguise/a decoy, and Bob is actually black.
  • Double Subverted: That guy is also a disguise/a decoy, and Bob in the film is actually South Asian.
  • Parodied: An in-universe casting director tests different black actors for the role of Bob and rules them out for extremely minor reasons, eventually settling on an extremely generic white actor.
  • Zig Zagged: Some characters keep their ethnicities from the book, but others are played by actors of different ethnicities
    • Bob is played by several different actors as he undergoes in character advanced cosmetic surgery.
  • Averted: Bob is black in the book, and is black in the movie. Similarly, everyone else keeps their ethnicities from the book.
  • Enforced: The director of Troper City: The Movie thinks someone of a different ethnicity will relate better to the movie's intended target audience.
  • Lampshaded: "They made a comic about our lives! ...Hey, why am I white in this?"
  • Invoked: The director hires someone not black for the reasons stated in Enforced.
  • Exploited: ???
  • Defied:
    • The director of is aware of the backlash that will happen if Bob is played by a white actor, so he deliberately casts a black man to play him.
    • The white actor cast as Bob learns that Bob was black in the book, and backs out of the project to ensure that Bob is played by a black man.
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  • Discussed: "Hey, Bob, if our lives were made into a movie, I bet they'd cast a white guy to play you."
  • Conversed: "Man, another movie that casts white people as black characters?"
  • Played For Laughs: In the in-universe film about Bob, Bob is played by a white actor, but the film has him emulate black culture, failing hilariously.
  • Played For Drama: Black actors resent that black characters are always played by white actors, because it denies them representation and livelihood.
  • Implied: Bob was racially ambiguous in the book but implied to have black roots. The film does away with these hints and makes him white.

Back to Race Lift.

Example of: