Some people consider this a slap in the face to the original designs. I’m here to tell you these re-castings prove those people are wrong. If you look at the worlds in which these characters were created you’d think that black people never made it off the boat. In New York no less. That’s not realistic. Modern writers knew that and gave birth to some refreshing adaptations of each character. And so black icons were born. Happy Black History Month!
5) Catwoman – Batman
Original Character Traits: Selena Kyle is sassy, sexy and tough as nails. Part pussy, part b*tch. The ultimate diva.
Why they went black: Have you met a black woman? Haha, j/k. Sort of. When you think Catwoman — for a lot of people — Eartha Kitt comes to mind. Eartha was the purrr-fect (couldn’t resist) blend of femininity and ass-kicking toughness. She was the cat with the canary. She could kiss it or eat it, you just never know. Halle Berry was a good choice too…the script was not.
4) Robert Neville – I Am Legend
Original Character Traits: A gritty scientist trying to revive humanity — while holding onto his own — who hunts vam-zombies.
Why they went black: Can you really go wrong casting Will Smith? Anyway, 50 years ago most people would laugh at the idea of a black person being Robert Neville, a brilliant scientist. Today, it’s not so far fetched. Besides, if you think of someone being brilliant yet fit enough to survivor an apocalypse and still interesting enough to capture our attention Cast Away-style…again it’s Will Smith.
3) Kingpin – Daredevil
Original Character Traits: the Kingpin is gigantic, but not fat. Tough. Brawler. Feared. Threatening in a “holy sh*t get out of this guy’s way” way.
Why they went black: This one was a no-brainer. The deep voice and imposingly muscular presence alone made Michael Clarke Duncan the obvious choice. Add that Kingpin was from one of the roughest neighborhoods in New York and why not make him a ‘hood survivor? It just makes sense.
2) Dracula – Vampire in Brooklyn
Original Character Traits: Charming but deadly.
Why they went black: Okay so Eddie Murphy wasn’t exactly playing Dracula, but it’s the same principle. Typically when a black person is cast in a movie he’s the lover or the fighter. There doesn’t seem to be an in between in the perception of African-Americans. No black geeks, nerds or outcasts. Dracula was both a lover and a fighter. There you go.
1) God – Bruce Almighty
Original Character Traits: The creator. His son — or He if that’s what you believe — had “skin of bronze and hair of wool.”
Why they went black: Who’s that sound like to you? Morgan Freeman is practically a god himself though, so he was a perfect fit.