Scarlett Johansson cast as trans man, backlash ensues

There’s been a sizable pushback over Hollywood’s casting of actor Scarlett Johansson as a trans man.

The star, who received negative feedback for accepting a whitewashed role in the “Ghost in the Shell” movie, has signed up to play a lead role in the upcoming “Rub & Tug” mafia drama. If filmed, Johansson would star as seventies underground kingpin Dante “Tex” Gill, who owned a string of illicit Pittsburgh massage parlors during the disco era. Gill is generally believed to have ID’d as transgender.

According to the Huffington Post, fans were not pleased.

“‘Look, I’ve really liked Scarlett Johansson in some of her films, but I think the actor playing a trans man should BE a trans man if at all possible,’ one person tweeted, adding that the actress ‘seems to need to learn that not ALL roles belong to her.’ Wrote another, ‘Scarlett Johansson fancies herself intellectual but she refuses to learn anything.'”

Johansson seemed indifferent to the criticism. A representative for the actor told the site Bustle: “Tell them that they can be directed to Jeffrey Tambor, Jared Leto, and Felicity Huffman’s reps for comment.”

The list consists of cisgender individuals who all received attention for playing transgender persons.

In the past, Johansson has argued for increased Hollywood diversity.