Freida Pinto met with a Black Panther activist to prepare for ‘Guerrilla’

'Guerrilla' Event In Beverly Hills

Here are some photos of Freida Pinto at “For Your Consideration” event for Guerrilla in Beverly Hills on Thursday. I don’t have an issue with Freida in a dusty pink shade, but doesn’t this suit look really dated? I think I just have an issue with the double-breasted jacket. If this was single-breasted, it would have been a much more interesting look.

Anyway, as we discussed before, Guerrilla is a miniseries event airing on Showtime (in America) and Sky (in Britain). It’s about racial tensions in London in the 1970s, a time when any non-white immigrant in Britain was considered “black,” at least according to this show. Which means that Freida is playing the lead in a miniseries about the black-power movement in Britain. Which has caused some legitimate concerns that American writer-producer John Ridley (an African-American man) has “erased” black women from the narrative of a black-power movement. While there’s been a significant outcry in Britain, there doesn’t seem to be much conversation about the erasure of black women in America with regards to this series. Which means Freida has mostly been doing press in America, including this new piece with the NY Post. Some highlights:

Her character protests the infamous Immigration Act 1971, which aimed to send nonwhite British residents out of the country: “It seems the most natural thing in the world to protest against the immigration act. Today, you have Occupy Wall Street, or the Women’s March on Washington. But something happens at the rally that shakes them up when their friend Julian [Nicholas Pinnock] is wrongly framed by the cops. They need to make an example of someone because he’s outspoken.”

She met with Farrukh Dhondy, a novelist, playwright and activist in the British Black Panther movement. “We learned a lot about the Black Power movement and what it meant. Anything that was being suppressed, including the Irish, was considered to be blackness.”

Commonwealth citizens came to Britain to work post-WWII: “A lot of people came from the colonies with their fair share of education and were relegated to jobs below their station. Jas is not feeling fulfilled. She’s trained in the medical field. She could be a real nurse. The same thing for Marcus. They want him to be a driver.”

[From The NY Post]

Again, I have no doubt that this series is a representation of the kind of oppression felt by minority communities in Britain. I have no doubt that the Indian community was just as oppressed, just as maligned and just as active as other minority communities. But… the series is still problematic because there doesn’t seem to be an accurate representation of the black women in the movement too. Is that on Freida? Or is that on John Ridley?

'Guerrilla' Event In Beverly Hills

'Guerrilla' Emmy For Your Consideration Event

Photos courtesy of WENN, Fame/Flynet.

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108 Responses to “Freida Pinto met with a Black Panther activist to prepare for ‘Guerrilla’”

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  1. Aiobhan Targaryen says:

    It’s fully on John and Idris. John wrote out black women (he did the same thing in Red Tails) and Idris being the executive producer. If Freida was in charge in any way on the production I would be dragging her just as hard as the two black men but she isn’t in charge, so there is no need to go after her.

    • Diana says:

      I agree. I’m hoping that there are some significant roles for black women in later episodes. The quality of the series will suffer so much if there aren’t, I feel.

      • Jeesie says:

        There are. The character played by Sophia Brown borrows a lot from Olive Morris, who organised the Brixton Black Women’s group and campaigned for affordable housing. The character played by Zawe Ashton is similar to Michael X, who was a sort of self appointed face of the movement.

      • Aiobhan Targaryen says:

        I kind of hope so as well. I would actually support it because I find this time period in the world very interesting.

      • Diana says:

        Cheers, Jeesie! That’s great news!

      • Diana says:

        Thanks also, Jeesie, for the interesting info you’ve been sharing throughout this thread.

      • Sixer says:

        Jeesie – so happy to hear there’s an Olive Morris figure depicted!

        I’ve downloaded the whole series but not started watching yet.

      • Ella says:

        Sorry to interupt but have there been any series made about the prejudice irish people faced/anti Irish sentiment.

      • Naughty corner says:

        @ Jeesie
        You are being disingenuous the roles played by the one black and one biracial women later in the series are marginal and as such they are not listed in the credits as leads, not featured in the trailer and not apart of the promotional tours

        I am West Indian and my father lived in the Uk at the time and was part of the movement before retuning home you can do all the mental gymnastic that you like this film does not accurately or proportionally represent the movement at the time with an Asain woman as the protagonist and BW sidelined or represented as low life prostitite traitors
        in fact Asain men were more involved and none of them were given any prominent roles .
        The concern raised by the Black British women has merit and we do not have to “wait and see ” as the promo and credits especially for a short six episode series make the bent of the whole thing pretty clear note that in the q & a the creatives couldn’t even use there are more substantive roles for black women coming up as a defense. why is that ?

    • Dottie Hinkle says:

      There is plenty of blame to go around. Actresses are not children. They are just as responsible for taking roles.
      Interesting thing about dohndy is that he called Olive an ugly little girl and was apparently extremely anti black women and colorist misogynist.
      Needless to say, I will not be watching.

    • CTgirl says:

      Where does it state that a screenwriter is obliged to represent every group in the main characters in a screenplay about race relations? This debate is kind of insane. Based on British history, that is the basis for this story, the Black Movement included pretty much all non-whites. OK. That is their history. Why are we in the US trying to re-write British history? Why do we expect a writer to include a representation of every group? Are there Egyptians, Palestinians, Canadian First Nations and Burmese represented in the mini-series because their countries were once part of the British Empire? Probably not. People need to calm down, this isn’t cultural appropriation, whitewashing, etc. Watch the mini-series then decide.

      • Aiobhan Targaryen says:

        CTgirl YOU NEED TO STOP. JUST STOP. Check your facts before you go on some ms. manners libertarian diatribe. Your overwhelming ignorance is not appreciated in this discussion.

        “Where does it state that a screenwriter is obliged to represent every group in the main characters in a screenplay about race relations? ”

        In the constitution on race relations and inclusivity. Never heard of it? Go look it up. If you still can’t find it. I can write it for you and email it to you.

        First, the conversation was started by a black British female journalist, not a black American woman. I WILL WRITE IT AGAIN: THE CONVERSATION WAS STARTED BY A BLACK BRITISH FEMALE JOURNALIST, Not a black American woman. British people have every right to question an American writer for not getting their history right.

        “Based on British history, that is the basis for this story, the Black Movement included pretty much all non-whites. OK. That is their history. Why are we in the US trying to re-write British history?”

        So you acknowledge that the real history had everyone who was considered non-white but in the next sentence are stating that black women arguing for being included in their story is re-writing history. Which one is it? British Black women were there and should be included because the story is supposed to be based on true events. Is it confusing to you that we are not using country of origin when we are referring to black women and black men?

        “Are there Egyptians, Palestinians, Canadian First Nations and Burmese represented in the mini-series because their countries were once part of the British Empire?”

        If they were there, they should be represented in the story because this is based on true events. Accuracy is key in these types of stories.

      • CTgirl says:

        @Aiobhan Targaryen, you’re hilarious. I never stated that the conversation started in the US. And btw, the Constitution doesn’t discuss inclusivity. It guarantees inalienable rights of all men (people) and doesn’t address a requirement for writers to address every group. You obviously missed my point that all groups may not be addressed in a screenplay due to what the writer decides to discuss and that it is up to the writer as they see fit and that not representing every group who may have been there doesn’t make it a bad thing. That was the point about no one being up in arms that other groups who would have been considered black during that time in Britain aren’t included. This is a work of fiction based on historic events, not an exhaustive history. Do you think that all screen plays based on historic events are totally factual?

      • WTW says:

        @CTGirl, no you and your complete denial of reality is hilarious, not Aiobhan Targaryen, who has shown far more patience with you than I would have. Your twisted logic is the same the Trump administration used when they avoided mentioning Jews during their Holocaust Remembrance Observance because not just Jews were killed by Hitler, they argued. Sure, gays, Gypsies and other folks were killed, but Jews were primarily the victims. In this case, while other groups played roles in the Black Power Movement in the UK (and the US), black women and men were at the forefront. Why is that hard to understand? No one group ever acts alone during a movement, but there are always leaders and groups who dominate.
        I just watched “Walkout,” a film about the Chicano students who walked out of class for better treatment. That film shows blacks in the crowd, but no black has a speaking role. This was fine, given they were not the leaders of the Chicano movement.
        American Jews played a key role in the U.S. civil rights movement, but can you imagine a film on civil rights that had Jews in major roles while sidelining black leaders to bit parts? It wouldn’t make sense, just as it doesn’t make sense to have an Indian woman as lead in a movie about the UK Black Power Movement led by Afro-Caribbean Brits.

      • CTgirl says:

        @WTW, I think that the difference between us is that you are using your feelings and I’m using logic. I’m absolutely not denying that black women were integral to the Black Movement. The fact that you think that proves that you didn’t read and comprehend my post. I’m stating that this is fictional work based on historic events and that that writer decides what to represent and who’s point of view to use. I can’t believe that you equate that to thinking that Jews weren’t the primary target during the Holocaust. That is just really bizarre of you. Do you even hear yourself? Unlike you, I don’t count on a TV show for my history lessons and I understand that sometimes the perspective you would like to see isn’t represented in that medium.

    • WTW says:

      Just saw this roundtable from prominent people of color, including one active in the movement, discussing “Guerilla” in the Guardian:

      • Naughty corner says:

        Thank you for this notice how the elder black woman who was a part of the movement graciously acknowledges the involvement of her Asian counterparts but admits that the portal of black women was unforgivable
        That is all the point many of us were trying to make instead it was met with willful obtuseness

      • sanders says:

        That’s great. but that is exactly the opposite of what you are doing. You do not in any way graciously acknowledge the involvement of Asian women. Throughout this thread, in order to make your valid point that Black women have been erased in the series, you consistently diminish and dismiss the participation of asian women. Your reasons seem to be that your dad says so and they are not famous. I don’t think people become activists to be famous. Lets also acknowledge the sexism of that time period that does exactly what you are doing, diminish and dismiss the contributions of women.

  2. Moon says:

    As an Asian person I’m actually really happy that freida is in this. What about Asian erasure? Asian people till recently were always left out of diversity talk, especially in the U.K.

    • anonymous says:

      But this is about black people and not asians Im sorry. I don’t know how anyone can feel happy about this.

      • Jeesie says:

        But it’s not just about black people. Asian’s featured really heavily in the movement in this period in the U.K too. The Asian Youth Movement and various Pakistani groups were really active in Black Power groups and protests. There were about 20 Asian women in leadership roles in Black Power groups at the time, women like Mala Sen. The Organization of Women of Asian and African Descent was formed out of that interconnectedness, also the Southhall Black Sisters.

        The show doesn’t seem to feature any Asian men at all, not even as minor characters, which doesn’t reflect the events portrayed or even just the basic demographics of the UK at the time. No one seems concerned about that.

      • Sixer says:


        I mean Farrukh Dhondy, an Indian man, was INTEGRAL to that movement. Worked hand in hand with Darcus Howe, Linton Kwesi Johnson, Stuart Hall and all the others. As did Tariq Ali.

        Why is Southall Black Sisters even CALLED Southall Black Sisters when it was founded by both black and Asian women to serve a predominantly Asian community? Because political blackness was an actual thing. People believed in it.

        This is why that old-fashioned word “coloured” was used in Britain. That’s why the employment discrimination was known as the “colour bar”. Because it was directed at both black and Asian folk. And that’s why, at that time, they worked together. The landmark case about employment discrimination was against a bus company in Bristol that refused to employ either black folk or Asian folk.

        As I say above – I’ve not watched yet. But if this show is to truly represent, it should feature the contributions made by black women AND Asian men and women. If it misses either, then it will have erased.

      • WTW says:

        @Jessie, It doesn’t have Asian men in it because John Ridley wanted to bring his own personal interracial relationship into this ahistorical film. He could’ve chosen a black woman and an Indian man as leads, but he’s basically said this film’s function was to validate his relationship with a non-black woman (I think she’s Latinx). Look, I’m a black woman married to a white man, and I find his reasoning ridiculous, but this is why it’s missing Indian men and minimizes black women. It boils down to a self-hating black man with a history of erasing black women from his films (see “Red Tails”) wanting to see his interracial love story play out on screen. It is not about history.

    • Aiobhan Targaryen says:

      So it is ok to remove black (Afro-Caribbean, African, etc.) British women from historical events that they led to make room for British Asian women? As if both cannot exist at the same time. Because comments like yours seem to say exactly that. It is ok to remove or not talk about Black women because your group is being represented. Is this really the argument you are trying to make? Both groups can and should be represented at the same time. I guess so much for solidarity between women of color.

      No one is arguing that Frida should not be in the picture, so stop being dismissive of a valid criticism that was brought up by the Black British female journalist. They are talking about her being the only woman of color with a significant role in the film and no significant roles for black women. There are tons of black women to choose from, but they more than likely didn’t even try. If there was a significant role for a black woman, why is she not also in the previews for the show, going on the press circuit with everyone else?

      • Sixer says:

        As I understand it, the challenge at the Q&A came after a viewing of the first episode of the series. In that first episode, there was no representation of black women involved in the struggle and only a black woman acting as an informant for Special Branch.

        If I’d seen just that episode, I’d have had some trenchant questions to ask, too. The challenge was righteous.

        But Jeesi above has already outlined representation of iconic figures such as Olive Morris, on the basis of watching the whole thing, I assume, so it seems that the first episode was not accurate of the whole. In which case, no problem. Because these were inclusive movements featuring many British Asians.

        Like I say, not seen it yet so I can’t personally say.

      • Aiobhan Targaryen says:

        @Sixer You are correct; that is exactly what happened. What still troubles me to this day is the fact that he could have easily said “We do have black women featured throughout the story just not in the first episode. We have more to come please watch for more, yall are being represented” Or something to that effect. But John said what he said, Badou said what he said, and Idris sat in the corner and said nothing. I already have little to no confidence in 2 of the 3 based on their histories. The men could have easily cleared everything up but they didn’t.

        I usually trust what you have to say in the threads I see your username in, if you end up watching it and say that black women are represented well and are not just standing there being used as wallpaper, I will back down and watch it.

      • Sixer says:

        I really do get it, you know. There’s an open sore of erasure of black women and it bloody hurts. I understand that I am able to take a more sober and reflective view and withhold judgement until I’ve watched myself because I am not a black woman.

        Also, I know I get highly annoyed when I think Americans are imposing their own lens on everyone else’s and won’t even hear that other people have different stories. That makes me fly off the handle in a similar way if I think I see it here on Celebitchy. I shout first and listen later!

        I agree too that the responses to the challenge were suspicious. If these guys were belt and braces on representation, they’d have been able to say very clearly, “This was just the first episode. You will see iconic black women represented in roles in the series, we promise.”

        But they didn’t say that, did they? So it may well be that the show does represent all the men and women, both black and Asian, who took part in these movements as Jeesie is arguing. But it may also be entirely likely that the contribution of black women were way behind in the minds of the men who made it.

      • Sixer says:

        Aiobhan – going in for the first episode now! I’ll try and get at least two watched tonight and will report back!

      • Sixer says:

        Ok. I’ve watched the first three episodes. I don’t like it. AT ALL.

        Random thoughts:

        Three episodes in and no prominent depiction of a righteous and powerful black woman acting with agency at all except for a few lines from minor characters here and there. So the challenge at the Q&A was on the button.

        It really is not an accurate story set in the black power movement in Britain. It is a far-fetched crime thriller. I hadn’t read any reviews before watching and only observed the furore on Twitter over the Q&A and discussed it on here, so I wasn’t expecting this. I thought it would at least be inspired by real events, such as the Mangrove 9 trial or something similar.

        I say again – it is far-fetched. The basic plot follows the fall-out from an “action” so Pinto, her boyfriend and another black guy are all on the run. So far as I know, nothing even remotely like this ever happened and the black power movement here was not associated with violent actions. And it’s just plain daft. So far, we’ve involved the IRA, the Angry Brigade and every other possible radical group that had nothing to do with the black liberation movements.

        On the detail – not a West Indian accent in sight. Not a word of patois. The Asian accents so diluted you can barely notice them. The script uses American terminology – the police keep going on about “white liberals” for example. The music choices are off.

        There’s no sense of solidarity of purpose – it’s all presented as one long bicker between mostly unpleasant people. No sense of the richness of either black or Asian culture.

        I’ll stick it out to the end now that I’ve started watching and now that it has incited such a big conversation. But so far, all I can say is that I hope and pray Steve McQueen’s upcoming series for the BBC is more successful in telling a representative and accurate black British story than Guerrilla is.

        Most disappointing.

      • sanders says:

        Sixer, sounds awful. I was actually looking forward to watching it. Maybe an American is the wrong person to be telling this story. It does sound more like what happened in the US in the 60-70′s with regard to the violence.

        From the last post on this topic, you mentioned the magazine New Dimension. I actually used that magazine for an essay back when I was in university in the late 80′s! That is where I learned about the usage of Black to describe Asians.

      • Sixer says:

        It’s a shame.

        In my febrile imagination, I was envisaging a story set in Brixton in the 1970s that had woven a fictional dramatic narrative around a love story or a miscarriage of justice or something similar – something that could actually have happened.

        The bulk of the cast would be black because Brixton was a majority black community. The activist circles would have shown the significant involvement of Asian participants because that happened. Perhaps there would have been some tangential depiction of other (sometimes white) radical groups in Brixton at that time – the squatters or the Brixton Fairies, for example. It would have shown police brutality. It would have had vivid scenes celebrating Caribbean culture. And that would all have underlaid a fictional plot for dramatic interest.

        There actually was a scene in the first episode set at a public meeting where the women were arguing that housing and employment should be the main planks of resistance. I thought there would be a lot more of that. Just one thirty-second scene. It did show police brutality. But that was it really.

      • Aiobhan Targaryen says:


        Thanks for the update! It does sound like it was poorly researched and underwhelming. Hard Pass for me.The only hope I have is that maybe it could lead to better projects that focus on this movement.

        The only good things to come from this project are the discussions (whether contentious or civil) and my own personal need to look up more about the black power movement/black lives matter movement in different countries.

    • Diane says:

      Here we go. Moon, the discussion is about two black men who wrote and produced this and excluded black women who played a part in the events they are depicting. Lack of Asian casting has been discussed a lot reference the Scarlett Johansson casting in Ghost in the Shell on this site, in the posts made for specifically speaking to that. What are you missing?

      • UMM says:

        TBH i think this show has completely erased West Indian people both Women and Men and their critical contrubiton to the civil rights in the’s quite interesting

      • WTW says:

        @UHM, that’s an interesting point. I didn’t think about the fact that neither Babou nor Idris are Afro-Caribbean. That’s also problematic.

      • Goldie says:

        Ok I see the point about Shonda Rhimes. It’s true that she hasn’t really had many Asian characters, outside of Sandra Oh. However, moon stated that Black tv shows only feature black actors. So I still thought it was worth noting that one of the most ground-breaking Asian actresses (2nd Asian actress to receive an Emmy nom and I believe the first to win a golden globe for tv) was hired by a black showrunner. Also some of the strides that black actors make help pave the way for other poc. For instance Kerry Washington was the first woc to lead a drama on network tv in almost 40 years. If not for the success of shows like Scandal, I wonder if ABC would have still offered Pryanka Chopra the lead in Quantico?
        I haven’t seen Mindy Kaling’s show, but from what I’ve read on this site, there are virtually no Asian actors in the main cast. I also haven’t watched Aziz Ansari’s Master of None, but my understanding is that the female lead is white . So even if Shonda has only created one major Asian female character, that still puts her ahead of some of the prominent Asian show runners. It also pretty common for non-black actresses to be cast opposite black men, although admittedly it’s usually Latinas who are cast, not Asians.

        Also speaking of Mindy Kaling…she apparently has a role in “A Wrinkle of Time” directed by Ava Duverny. So there’s another example of an Asian actress getting cast in a major film by an African-American actor.
        Considering the fact that black people don’t have that much power in Hollywood to begin with, I still think they’ve been fairly inclusive of other poc.

        Edit: I accidentally posted this in the wrong place.

      • sanders says:

        Goldie, I would agree with your point that Kerry Washington paved the way for Priyanka Chopra. I think she is someone who benefited from the black lead Oscar so white campaign. She was a presenter that year which I thought was weird as she is mainly a bollywood actress and new to american television. I don’t think she was ever nominated for an oscar for her bollywood work so it seems odd that she ended up on the oscar stage. I thought it was a cynical ploy by the oscar people. Worse of all, she seems clueless about the issue of racism in hollywood.

        Lets talk about the asian show runners mindy and aziz. I have written here many times my frustration with both mindy and aziz. Mindy has no lead South Asians on her show and neither does Aziz with the exception of his parents ( who I think can’t act at all) . Interestingly, both show have main characters who are black. Mindy’s initial depiction of the black nurse was very problematic and I think she’s since corrected it. Aziz has a female black character who is interesting. He even has some male south asian friends that pop from time to time, but except for his mom, he lives in a world completely devoid of south asian women, quite a feat for a south asian man. So I guess we can conclude that the south asian show runners are inclusive, by including white and black main characters but maintain a quota of one, themselves, when it comes to south asians.
        See, racism and poc’s relationship to it does not fit into neat little categories. This is why I understand why moon would be pleased to see frieda pinto in a prominent role while acknowledging the erasure of black women, which she repeatedly did.

    • Diana says:

      Yes, sure, it’s great Frieda’s in this – the UK black power movement was a broad one. Black women were a driving force, though, and that needs to be shown! It’s really not okay for black women to be excluded from this production in favour of casting an Asian actress. There should be space for both, especially when telling this particular story.

    • Naughty corner says:

      So the only way that Asains can have a seat at the table is at the expense and erasure of black women ? You are happy about that ???? but that is the way white supremacy works doesn’t it it makes POC fight for table scraps. for the record no one is saying Pinto couldn’t be cast in this series or that Asains were not apart of civil rights movements in UK in the 70 s what people are saying is that forefront of the movement were BLACK people and in particular black women so why is the lead protagonist an Asain woman and why are there NO equally strong black women lead instead they are relegated to low class prostitute snitch . This is what you are happy about ?????
      Furthermore the majority of the Asains involved were men !f you are an Aasain from Uk you will know that even now Asain and middle eastern women are not encouraged to be running up and down with black men they will be disowned with a quickness ask Pinto of she can carry a black man home to her parents ?
      Ridley found time to give several black men prominent roles so where are the Asain men ?
      Pinto meets the requirements for acceptable WOC not too dark straight hair etc if it wasn’t her they would have cast a half white biracial woman. Ridley and his ilk are race and color struck when it comes to women that is all.

      • Diana says:

        Totally agree that asian roles should not exist as a way to push black women out. The movement was an inclusive one and it’s disappointing that the series isn’t.

      • Moon says:

        No, I don’t believe Asian women should be placed at the expense of black women. But so often Asian women don’t even exist on screen and black women do have more opportunities than us. And if freida hadn’t been cast, I doubt any black women would be agitating for proper representation for Asian women. Or if the asian woman had been cast in a supporting role, no one would have questioned it either. Too often we are invisible or a bit part in any discussion but no one speaks up for us, whether black or white. So I’m glad that for once an Asian woman has been cast as the lead, especially since Asian people were equally discriminated and fought against the establishment too. Would any of you have spoken up if no Asian person were cast or if they were relegated to a supporting role? No. we would go about praising this show for its diversity (meaning all black). Where’s the solidarity then? I see it a lot here in the states – African American shows are praised for diversity yet are predominantly black and don’t feature Asians or latinx people. That’s hypocritical to me.

      • Moon says:

        If people truly mean that there should be a strong black female lead in addition to a strong Asian female lead (which I wholeheartedly support), the question posed would be – why is there no additional lead role for a black woman – not: why was this Asian woman cast instead of a black woman. You’re implying an Asian actress stole a role when she didn’t. Asian women were a big part of this movement and we deserve to be leads too.

      • Aiobhan Targaryen says:

        @ Moon.

        “No, I don’t believe Asian women should be placed at the expense of black women. But so often Asian women don’t even exist on screen and black women do have more opportunities than us.”

        It doesn’t make it right at all. Your guilt trip is definitely not going to sway me to believing that this is ok. Yes, more opportunities should be paid for all Asian women not just the fair-skinned ones or the lighter brown ones, all Asian women. What is not ok is anyone trying to defend a black woman’s erasure in favor of a female from a different race.? Which is still what you are doing.

        Would any of you have spoken up if no Asian person were cast or if they were relegated to a supporting role?

        Yes, yes I would have. You don’t know what people are saying on other boards or even in other threads on this site.

        “I see it a lot here in the states – African American shows are praised for diversity yet are predominantly black and don’t feature Asians or latinx people. That’s hypocritical to me. ”

        First, why are you talking about African American shows when this is a British production? You need to stop conflating the two issues. Also, your bias is clearly showing through.

        Latinos come in different shades, not just the light ones. There are several Afro-Latino actors and actresses already working on some of the shows you referring to or just in hollywood in general. We even support light skin latinos if your work is good, we follow it.

      • Naughty corner says:

        No Asain women were not a big part of the moment were that involved yes but they were not as involved as Asain men and certainly not the leads and definately did NOT play a greater role than black women Did you notice that Pinto had to meet with an Asain man (Farouk )for some perspective what does that tell you ??? please give me the names of the Asain women Leaders (not of thier own movement but the one depicted in the film ) I will wait and then tell me why do you feel that Asian woman ” deserves ” to be the lead in a film about the BLACK panther movement ??

        Your attitude is typical of a sentiment expressed by non black POC during the Oscar so white time instead of focusing you demans for equality where it belongs that is on white and main stream media you are instead overly concerned and resentful of any strides that you see black people making and seem to feel that in order for you to increase black folks must decrease it is this crab in a barrel mentality why there is no true solidarity among POC and white supremacy will forever reign

      • Sixer says:

        While colourism is a real and actual thing, it is completely irrelevant to whether a show about the black power movements in Britain in the 1970s is representative or not.

        The most important figures in these movements in Britain at that time were black men, black women, Asian men and Asian women.

        The show should be accurately representing the roles played by all of them.

      • Moon says:

        How am I biased but you’re not? I’m not resentful of strides black peoples have made in media – but I don’t understand why diversity talk is so often only about the black community and Asians are always relegated to an afterthought for both black and hire communities.

      • Goldie says:

        @moon I’m curious about which shows you’re referring to when you mention African American shows. If you’re thinking about the types of shows that are on BET- well of course they have mostly black casts, as it is a black network aimed at black people.
        However, Shonda Rhimes is arguably the most powerful black producer on tv, and her shows are very diverse with prominent roles for white, Asian, and Latinx actors in addition to black actors. I don’t watch Empire, but I’m pretty sure they’ve had non-black actors play key roles. Infact I recently read that Eva Longoria will be on the show. So, while agree that diversity isn’t just about black people, I don’t think it’s fair to accuse black people in Hollywood of not being inclusive enough. Black folks have always extended a hand to other marginalized groups.

      • Sixer says:

        Naughty – Farrukh Dhondy was literally one of the godfathers of the British Black Panther movement. He spent a lifetime in collaboration with black activists. For example, he edited Race Today with Darcus Howe (who recently died, RIP). He was married to Mala Sen, who was herself one of the most prominent women in the British liberation movements of the time.

        It’s likely that Farrukh was a consultant for the show because many of the leading lights are dead, some, like Linton Kwesi Johnson, are notoriously irascible and might not have wanted to contribute to a show financed by Rupert Murdoch, and some, like Darcus Howe, were too ill. Some of the black women involved, such as Beverley Bryan, have gone back to the Caribbean, too. Olive Morris died many years ago.

      • Aiobhan Targaryen says:

        “How am I biased but you’re not? I’m not resentful of strides black peoples have made in media – but I don’t understand why diversity talk is so often only about the black community and Asians are always relegated to an afterthought for both black and hire communities. ”

        Because I am not trying to guilt trip anyone into believing that erasing women in a story where they belong is ok. full stop. This is not the oppression olympics. we all have a lot to gripe about when we talk about white supremacy. But it is not ok to distort an argument so that you can guilt trip someone into backing down. Just because black people are more visible (in your mind) than Asians does not mean we have a lot more power. Visibility and hyper-visibility are not the same thing. Hyper-visibility of black people doesn’t translate into less systemic racism or more justice for black people. if that were the case, tensions between us and the police would not be so high, the incarceration for blacks would not be so high and so on and so on. Stop thinking about this as if it is a game of jump rope where one person has to jump out and another has to jump in. There is room for all of us. Which is what most of us black women have been stating the entire time.

        FYI: Black people are not getting special treatment by whites. You may not think you are saying that we are but when you say things like ” but I don’t understand why diversity talk is so often only about the black community and Asians are always relegated to an afterthought for both black and hire communities. ” you are definitely leaning that way. You are placing the blame of your communities’ poor treatment and why it has not gotten better on black people than where it truly belongs: on white people. This statement shows that you either view us blacks as a huge obstacle that needs to be overcome in order to get out from under white supremacy or blacks as equally as oppressive as whites. One is wrong and the other damn dead wrong.

      • Naughty corner says:

        With all due respect I do not need you to school me on who Farruckh was as I mentioned I am West Indian and my father was in the Uk at the time
        Note for all the contribution of him and others, there are no Asain men in the film ? That is why I mentioned colorism as it tends to affect women more than men in western media . Note Ridley has at least three prominent roles for dark skinned black men and couldn’t cast one Asain men and sidelined the black women
        You mentioned elsewhere that the film should be representative ( I suppose withinreason ) of what took place at the time and therein lies the problem it is not

        The erasure of BW is misogynoir and here is where ally ship comes in , too many of our so called allies are jumping through hoops to try and defend ” wait and see bull crap Why cuz Idris is hot.?

      • moon says:

        You want to talk about solidarity, and yet no one here is going ‘Hey that’s great that an asian woman was got offered a lead role. It’s great that we recognized that asian people were also part of this movement.’ Instead we have people insisting asians were a smaller part of this movement, or that she was cast ‘in place of a black woman’. She wasn’t. I completely agree that this show requires black female representation, but why is everyone making a negative fuss about the fact that an asian woman was cast in a lead role? She’s not taking any one’s role away. Why is not one celebrating our achievement, and yet we are supposed to celebrate yours?

      • Naughty corner says:

        @ moon
        This is because there is nothing here to celebrate erasing black women from thier own historical narratives whilst engaging in revisionist history which disproportionally and inaccurately places an Asain woman at the forefront of said history is NOT SOLIDARITY
        This is not some random fiction but historically inspired story based on are a real movement which sure Asians were involved and sure Pinto could have been cast but not in the manner it which it was done marginalizing black women who were at the forefront
        People like you do not challenge the status quo or mainstream media you will never turn up on a LEna Dunham thread to complain about why Asian women are not in Girls, Friends or whatever ( Asians live in NYC so why not right ) but as soon as black people have something going on there you are to complain about what you ” deserve ” and that black people are not the only POC etc.
        Basically anti blackness thinly veiled as concerns re diversity

      • moon says:

        First of all – I have actively campaigned and talked about whitewashing of asian roles, so your point is moot. Ghost in The Shell pissed me off. And I am making it very clear that I believe black women should also be given lead roles in this show. What makes me angry is that a lot of the commentary here seems to suggest that Asians were only incidental to the cause when they were very much leaders too, or that an asian woman like Frieda does not accurately portray what happens when AGAIN asian people were very much part of the movement. Are you suggesting that asians should also only be given a supporting role, even when historically they were leaders of this movement too? How is that suggestion not erasure? I’ve said this to white people – calling you out on your racism does not make me a racist or anti-white/anti-black.

      • moon says:

        @Goldie I actually disagree re: Shonda Rhimes. Apart from Sandra Oh, I struggle to think of any other Asian leads in her shows. Grey’s Anatomy had one latina lead, Sara Ramirez, who recently left. After Sandra Oh and Sara Ramirez left, the show has been mostly white and black. Asians and LatinX people are relegated to the background, must like with shows run by white showrunners.

      • sanders says:

        I’m here in support of moon. She stated quite clearly that she wanted more representation of Asians and it seems a lot of people hear that as her saying that she wants to eliminate representation of black women. It’s curious to me that there are posters here who hear a south asian woman stating she’d like to see more representation of her community and would also like to hear black women support this, yet, some posters insist moon wants black women erased. No where did she say that. What I’m hearing from these posters is that they want people to recognize the marginalization of Black women. Moon is saying the same about South Asian women. Why does this have to be a zero sum game? This is not how we move forward. Please, recognize your allies.

        Moon, fully agree about shonda rhimes. With the lonely exception of Sandra Oh, her idea of diversity is black and white. In fact, she had numerous white characters and a few black though the lead in Scandal is a Black woman. I always side eye american medical shows that have zero south asian representation. That is just not even remotely close to the reality as Indian Americans are over represented in the medical field. Why does Shonda feature plenty of white docs but not one single South Asian doc?
        And I would say the same of Mindy Kaling, though I think she did have one south asian doc who appeared for a limited number of episodes…still, pretty weak.

      • Diana says:

        Moon, you said that you couldn’t see anyone saying that it’s good Frieda was cast in this and good to have a representation of asian people in the movement.
        I actually said exactly that above, a while before you wrote your comment.
        Is it good Frieda is in this? Yes!
        Is it good that there are no substantial roles for black women, in a show that is about a movement heavily involving black women? No!

        There should be roles for both.

      • Naughty corner says:

        @ sanders
        So you here for moon good for you trust that you have actually read all the posts then
        Firstly @ moon is conveniently overlooking that fact that most posters myself included have no problem with Pinto being cast but instead the way she was cast and at whose expense see even @ Diane post below
        Secondly moon wants more Asian representation which I support curiously however all her posts with complaints in this regard are centered around black people , black shows and like the one black show runner Shonda Rimes LOL ( she only mentioned Ghosts after my last comment to her) nary a mention of Lena Dunham , Tina Fey , Vince Gilligan and the literal scores of other white show runners and hundreds of white shows that exclude Asians .. Nope only the black hypocrites ( Her words ) are apparently the problem. Even Mindy Kaling and Aziz only have white love interests and do not feature Asian women on their show but that’s fine it just the blacks who are exclusionary LOL

        My question is this why do you and moon feel that black people have some greater responsibility to be inclusive than white and even Asian people ? You do realize that blacks like Asians are also a marginalized group ? Do you also realize that when one marginalized group expects another marginalized group to do the heavy lifting rather than focusing on the dominant culture that this is another form of oppression Also what is preventing Asians from speaking up about diversity let me guess the blacks right ?

        As for Shonda Rimes the role she created for Sandra O was the first Emmy nominated role for an Asian women iin decades and She and Kerry Washington were instrumental in Priyanka Chopra her gig at Quantico In fact Chopra speaks on Kerry’s support all the time But no as far as moons posts go Its blacks who are the problem never mind status quo and the dominant white culture
        Trust me I have taken the time to read all the comments and I Know who my allies are and are not thanks

        Sent from my iPad

      • sanders says:

        Naughty corner, you make way to many assumptions about anyone on this thread who has a differing opinion and attribute nefarious motivations and thoughts to them. My posting history clearly contradicts your distorted perception of me so I will leave it at that.

      • moon says:

        Thanks for the support Sanders, I appreciate it :)

        @Naughty I spoke about GITS because it’s fresh on my mind. I’ve spoken up numerous times about problematic white showrunners, just because you don’t see it doesn’t mean I don’t. I refer to black showrunners in this post because we are talking about Guerilla, and because I want to point out that asian erasure is not just a white problem. POC erasure and racism is not specific to just white people. And yes I count Mindy in this problematic group.

        Your comment about other POCs relying on black people to do the heavy lifting is one I’ve heard repeatedly (I work in this industry as a casting associate) and one that I consistently refute. I hate it when black artists insist they are the only ones speaking up. LatinX and Asian people are just as vocal, just because the media doesn’t publish us speaking up or just because you don’t see it doesn’t mean we’re not speaking up. We’re fighting just as hard as you are. Asian people have gotten more coverage lately thanks to GITS and Iron Fist, and you bet I spoke up against my white friends who tried to whitesplain those decisions to me. Unfortunately our Latinx peers have it the worst, and I find myself constantly finding ways to try and bring in a Latinx actor/actress for roles that are non stereotypical. I’ve always found Tina Fey problematic and said so. I don’t know why I even have to defend myself on these points, it’s not relevant – again I am not being racist by calling you out on your racism. Your line of thinking is problematic and I am calling you out of that. I don’t know why you’re attacking my ‘diversity credentials’.

      • moon says:

        @Diana unfortunately I think opinions like yours are in the minority, and I was making a general reply to the majority sentiment. I do appreciate your support though. Also everyone here is jumping on me, suggesting that my support for Freida = my support for black female erasure when that is not true. I don’t understand why supporting asian representation means black erasure. But that is what you all are suggesting.

      • naughtcornered says:

        @ moon
        Well by that same token my calling you out on your obvious anti blackness does not make me racist either . Interestingly you are only now mentioning your grouses with white /Asian show runners because I called you out on it Before your focus was ONLY with black shows black people , black hypocrites and curiously like the one prominent black show runner. Why was that really ? Saying you are doing so because of Guerrilla doesn’t wash as in case you haven’t noticed it actually has Asian representation LOL
        The Shonda critique was particularly curious as the little that she has done is still a lot more than many others but you refuse to acknowledge that or any thing good about black people regarding inclusivity . Even here on this site there was much support from black posters Such as myself I.e QQ etc, about Ghost in the Shell , Great Wall and other Asian erasures

        You say Asains are speaking out but not being heard by main stream media , the last I heard MSM is mainly controlled by whites so how is this the fault of black people ?

        The fact that in celebrating Pinto casting You found it necessary to mention that black actresses have it better, diversity is not only about black people and that if an Asian woman wasn’t cast black people wouldn’t care truly speaks to your mindset. ( So you are the one that made it a us vs them at the get go and are now feigning surprise at the responses it has engendered? ) Plus you pretty much spent all your time till now laying your issues with Asian representation at the foot of black people so as Maya Angelou said best “when people show you who they are believe them ”

        Please indicate one thing I have said above that was not representative of moons prior posts are any other assumptions
        I will wait …..

  3. anonymous says:

    This is pure race appropriation and I don’t see the difference between her and Scarlett Johansson in the GOS. I hope this project fails !!

    • Jeesie says:

      How is it race appropriation? She’s not playing a black woman, she’s playing an Asian woman. There were many Asian women heavily involved in the UK’s Black Power movement. Frieda’s character seems to be drawing inspiration from a few of them, but particularly Mala Sen.

      Scarlett’s situation is entirely different. She was playing a Japanese character in a remake of a seminal Japanese production. Frieda is an Asian woman playing an Asian woman in a movement many Asian women were a part of.

      • Naughty corner says:

        @ Jesse . There were some Asains involved in the movement primarily men they were NOT on the majority the dominant core were black including women so why the narrative around one Asain woman at the expense of black women ?
        What’s next a retelling of India’s fight for freedom from the British that focused on that one black guy who turned up to support the cause

      • Jeesie says:

        There were hundreds of Asian activists involved at any one time. You make it sound like one or two showed up for a few marches. In reality there were about 20 Asian women in prominent leadership roles, at least twice as many men, and then many hundreds who joined activist groups and protested, campaigned etc. regularly.

        Yes, it was still a majority black movement, but that is reflected in the casting. The main characters are all black except for Frieda, and there’s only two other Asian people in the cast (one of whom is just brief set decoration). If anything it’s very light on Asian’s, which I assume is one reason they made Frieda’s character a main character. She’s representing a whole big section of the movement.

      • Sixer says:

        In Britain, these movements formed and worked together to defend the rights of post-WWII non-white immigrant populations that the British government had actually sought and subsidised to come here to shore up labour shortages. These immigrant populations were equally black and Asian. They faced the same issues: face-to-face personal discrimination; racist attacks by the far-right white minority; police brutality; structural racism in the form of access to employment and housing.

        It was neither a mostly black movement with a minor Asian contribution, nor a mostly Asian movement with a minor black contribution. It was a joint struggle with groups that operated both together and on behalf of one group or the other, and were intimately connected and overlapping.

      • Dottie Hinkle says:

        Anyone have any actual names of these asian women in prominent leader roles in the BP? I keep hearing “asian women were a big part of the movement” etc but no actual names of them?

      • Sixer says:

        You’ve already had Mala Sen, the woman on whom Pinto’s character is based! Off the top of my head, Gita Sahgal, Pragna Patel and Amrit Wilson.

      • Dottie Hinkle says:

        I was just thinking since it was being repeated surely there must be a bunch of names, photos and footage of these women. I did go off and Google and the last three women you named were part of the Southall black sister org (which is an all asian woman focused organisation) I failed to see the prominent role they had in the black power movement. There is not much info about them being a part of it. I found plenty of Olive Morris and other black women and even asian men but not many asian women.

      • Sixer says:

        Amrit Wilson was a co-founder of OWAAD. The two As stand for African and Asian. As I say above, SBS had black and Asian founders but predominantly served a particular Asian community in London. I know what SBS is because I volunteered for the organisation in the 1990s.

        You’re not HEARING. The black power movement in the UK in the 1970s was an inclusive movement, made up of black and Asian groups, some of which were separate and some of which were integrated, but all of which interconnected and overlapped with one another. And the word black meant not just black as in African/Caribbean: it meant, TO THE PEOPLE INVOLVED, anybody non-white. So groups you are perceiving as Asian WERE part of the black power movement TO THE PEOPLE WHO FOUNDED THEM.

        Time has moved on. Language has moved on. The language used by the activists was different even in then to that used by the wider society of all ethnic backgrounds because it was also a feminist and radical left movement. But this is what black meant to THESE ACTIVISTS at THAT TIME, black and Asian alike. They would be aghast at some of the things said on this thread.

        Pinto’s character represents an ACTUAL PERSON.

        You could not tell a story about race liberation in the UK at this time without including Asian men and women.

      • Jeesie says:

        @Dottie Mala Sen, Avtar Brah, Pragna Patel, Gita Saghal, Hannana Siddiqui and Amrit Eildon are the first that come to my mind. They’re also the ones who continued being prominent activists. I’d have to double check some others as it’s been a long time. Unfortunately I think a lot of names have been lost from public record now too. I personally remember two Pakistani women who were really important to the Union group and some of the resulting split off groups, and some Indian and Pakistani women who played a massive part in semi-merging and organising my local Black Power/Asian Youth groups, but damned if I can remember their names or find information on them. Not everyone continued the fight in a notable way, and a lot of women in particular published anonymously if they did publish, and didn’t take any public credit for their impact within some major groups.

        One smaller part of the reason the U.K. Black Power movement is somewhat forgotten/overlooked (beyond the obvious desire of many to pretend it never happened) is we didn’t do the greatest job of documenting it at the time. An unfortunate amount of the history comes from select people remembering it decades later. It’s really frustrating reading the history books having lived it, as so much is left out or referred to vaguely and so many crucial men and women, black and Asian, aren’t remembered because they weren’t the loudest voices.

      • Dottie Hinkle says:

        I understand. But to say there were so many asian women in prominent roles is just…I expected more, that’s all. And like I said, I couldn’t find much in the way of information about any of them involved in the black power/panthers UK movement.
        Here is the info about the sbs

        Southall Black Sisters (SBS) is a non-profit all-Asian organisation based in Southall, West London, England. This Asian women’s group was established in August 1979 in the aftermath of the death of anti-fascist activist Blair Peach, who had taken part in a demonstration against a National Front rally at Southall Town Hall.[1][2]

        The SBS was originally established in order to provide a focus for the struggle of Asian women in the fight against racism, but became increasingly involved in defending the human rights of Asian women who are the victims of domestic violence and in campaigning against religious fundamentalism.[2]

        Throughout most of its existence, the group’s primary campaigners have been Pragna Patel, Meena Patel and Hannana Siddique.[2] Gita Sahgal, the writer and journalist (on issues of feminism, fundamentalism, and racism), film director, and human rights activist, has also been an active member of the organization.

        They are best known for the role they played in the Ahluwalia case in 1989 when a woman named Kiranjit Ahluwalia set fire to her abusive husband. They supported her in the case, and were eventually successful.

      • Sixer says:

        Dottie – quoting an incredibly superficial Wiki article to contradict a lengthy explanatory post by someone who was actually there is really not helpful.

        Again, you are not taking on board the concept of political blackness, which British activists took on at the time. African, Caribbean and Asian activists alike all saw themselves as politically black. This was widely accepted. So when you talk about British Black Power, you are talking about groups today that would be seen separately but weren’t by the activists who comprised them at that time.

        Of course the contributions of women are under-recorded. That’s the exact argument made by people on this thread who are angry that reports of the first episode of this series did not represent black women well. The contributions of Asian women are equally under-recorded. And, as Jeesie hints at, has it occurred to you that the highly patriarchal nature of some of the Asian communities may have meant anonymous work by some women, so that their families and community elders didn’t stop them?

        Here are a couple of photos of early SBS members, both clearly showing black women, though quite why anybody needs to go to these lengths to prove it, is beyond me.×235.jpg

        You know, on the previous post about this, Jeesie, herself clearly a British Asian woman, spoke to her own involvement in the British black power movement and how these groups were interconnected and saw themselves as part of a whole. Did one single, solitary poster congratulate her or thank her for her contribution to the struggle for equality? No. Just a barrage of posts from people who clearly weren’t there and had little knowledge telling her that her own life didn’t happen.

        So I’ll do it. THANK YOU, Jeesie. Your contribution mattered.

      • Naughty corner says:

        @ jeesie
        How many if the Asain women you listed were leaders of the BPM as that is background of THIS story and that is the question @ dotti was asking.
        As I have said before I am West Indian and my Dad was in Uk and active at the time . Organised civil disobedience was mainly started by West Indians/ Afro Carribbeans as culturally African and Asains tend to be more conservative, assimulative and less confrontational. They did however shortly join the resistance and no one is disputing that but to suggest that Asain women outnumbered and were more dominant in the BPM than black women is patently false
        You are implying that by insisting that the casting is reflective of the time when an Asain woman is front and center as the protagonist , black women are marginalized and Asain men are absent ????
        Also what happened is that many of these people were inspired by the BPM etc. to start thier OWN groups which is where the majority of the Asain women you listed fall and for you to list these women in response to @ do tties query is somewhat disingenuous

      • Naughty corner says:

        @ sixer who said ” Pintos character was an actual person ”
        So now you know more than Ridley the actual creator of the film who stated that his reason for casting Pinto was based on his own marriage to an Asain woman !!!
        This controversy isn’t new it is coming to a head now that the mini series is actually being released and I had been following for some time because of my dads involvement in the UK.Prior to being cast the dailies clearly stated that the lead couple were inspired/ loosely based on an actual couple of which both were BLACK .It was Ridley who decided to make the woman Asain in addition to his revisionist history because of his wife ( his own admission ) there was another man I forget his name who said Pintos character made sense because of the work of an Asian man. So in one fell swoop both black women and Asain men were erased
        And for the umpteenth time no one is saying Asains uwere not involved in the resistance we are saying that making Pinto front and center in the Black Panther Party to the exclusion of BLack women and others from thier own stories is NOT fair or accurate

        In your own words you cannot tell a story about race liberation without including Asains and you certainly can’t tell one without black women. Which is what is happening here

      • Sixer says:


        If you read all my comments, you’ll see that whenever we are talking about the actual show, I say that it would be outrageous to erase or minimise the significance and contribution of black women.

        What I am responding to here are the remarks minimising or denying Asian contributions and the insistence on denying the concept of political blackness as it existed at the time or that the word black had a specific meaning within the British black power movement – a meaning that included Asians. I think it’s as unhelpful to erase these factual things as it is to erase black women.

        I stand by both what I argue about the show and what I argue about the movements of the time. They are two separate things.

        See my reply to Aiobhan above for what I think of the show itself, now that I have seen the first three episodes. It is not a positive view!

      • moon says:


        “I say that it would be outrageous to erase or minimise the significance and contribution of black women.

        What I am responding to here are the remarks minimising or denying Asian contributions and the insistence on denying the concept of political blackness as it existed at the time or that the word black had a specific meaning within the British black power movement – a meaning that included Asians.”


      • Naughty corner says:

        @ sixer
        And you need to read my comments from my very first post I have been consistent yes Asians were involved ! Yes Pinto could have been cast but to made front and center of the BLACK panther movement ( not even just civil disobedience in UK overall ) whilst erasing black women from the narrative was not an accurate reflection of the time
        You are the one who insisted to preaching to choir with the …but but Asains were there when that was never the flipping point , you are apparently so invested in feeling that you are the only one here who knows about the UK and history that you just wanted to give everyone a history lesson that they did not need

        Further more the creator himself RIdley indicated that the reason for casting Pinto was because of his own personal issues that is he also has an Asian wife but again know it all you are insisting that the character ws an actual Asian woman when it was not . In fact another one of the shows own creators stated that Ridleys decision to make the lead female Asian could work as there was also an Asian MAN in the cause that was thier inspiration
        This is what people do all the time , black women simply raise thier hands to say I am being erased / marginalized and you all make it about every flipping thing else under the sun
        Quite frankly one did not need to see all the episodes to know where this was going as it is only a six episode series and the trailer, promotional materials and tour , casting information made it clear the there were nothing substantive for black women except some token appearances and being lowlife traitors

      • Diana says:

        Naughty corner, the British Black Panthers included Asian people because they were black. Black, at the time, meant anyone not white: anyone “coloured”.

        Yes, there should be roles for black women in this show!! It’s disappointing, ridiculous and hurtful that black women’s contributions aren’t being shown.
        But in making that point, there’s no need to minimise the important work done by asian men and women in the struggle.

      • Sixer says:

        Naughty – last attempt to try to make you hear me and what I am saying.

        I don’t approve of minimising or erasing the contribution of black women from cultural representations of the British black power movements.

        This is entirely separate to my correcting the misrepresentation of those movements going on on this thread. You referred to Farrukh Dondy, without even respecting him enough to spell his name correctly, as though he were just some random Asian man taken on board by Ridley, when in fact he was a founder member and leading light of the British Black Panthers as was his partner, Mala Sen. So no, I don’t think you can have known all about him. Yet, you replied to my post pointing this out saying you didn’t need the education!

        You keep re-emphasising the black in British Black Panthers as though it was a movement specifically for black Britons when it wasn’t (see Dondy and Sen) due to the concept of political blackness. You won’t even spell Asian correctly and it’s beginning to feel as though that is a deliberately offensive thing.

        I am hoping other commenters read what I’m saying and get a better understanding of the context and radical environment in Britain at that time.

        None of this is minimising or erasing black women either generally or approving of such having happened in this TV show.

    • sanders says:

      Naughty Corner, why is your second hand account from your father more legitimate from Jeesie, who actually lived it? Not only that, Sixer has provided a lot of documentation verifying the involvement of South Asian women. Your insistence that South Asian women were marginal in the movement, based on your one source, your father, is quite offensive and erases the real sacrifices these activist made for the greater good, including for your family.

      • Naughty corner says:

        @ sanders
        Why should Jeesies account be more relevant than my Dads were they not both there and aren’t they both secondhand ? Also how do you know that is all I am basing my opinions on.? It’s either some of you don’t read or you are being willfully obtuse from the get go I have acknowledged the involvement of Asians honestly it’s like talking to a blank wall now.
        My salient point has consistently been , were Asian women more involved more dominant or outnumbered the black women and even the Asian men in the movement ? The answer is no even Jeessie had to admit this …So why then do two black men of all the people create a narrative where an Asian woman is front and center of the BLAck panther movement WHILST black women and even Asain men are erased ? and why do people such as yourself who are so concerned with inclusivity more offended with me pointing out the erasure than the actual erasure itself ?

      • Sixer says:

        Ok, last last word to you, Naughty. I promise I’ll shut up now!

        I think it’s important to get the general historical context right.

        But honestly, now I’ve seen the first half of the actual show, all these heated conversations we are having are pretty redundant. The show doesn’t even TRY to provide a fictionalised but accurate story about British black power. It’s more like one of those old American blaxploitation flicks. It’s a crime thriller with a ludicrous plot using the British black power movement as a style guide (and an inaccurate style guide at that). The whole plot bears no relation whatsoever to anything that ever happened.

        Pinto isn’t portraying some wonderful heroine at all. He’s made her out to be someone like um… a Baader-Meinhof Group terrorist or something like that. Her role is not an erasure of roles played by actual black women activists at that time because it is nothing like the role played by any black OR Asian activist at that time, man OR woman.

        If I were either a black or Asian woman, I’d be pretty pissed off that this was how Ridley decided to portray women activists in his show.

      • naughtycornered says:

        @ sixer
        I appreciate that some Americans perhaps may not understand that In the UK people of color had to band together to fight for racial justice and that there was an involvement of Asians and yes a sense of political blackness, that being said why did you keep responding to me in particular with these lectures when I said nothing of the sort ?
        As for your particular response to me on Farrukh , it was somewhat redundant as Kaiser had already alluded to his importance and you has already mentioned this elsewhere if anything he further highlighs the importance and erasure of Asian men. And whilst we are giving out history lessons did you know that when black activist Olive Morris stood up against the sexism that was in the movement , Farrukh disparaged her as an ugly black girl ? ( See the text Gender Imperialism and Global Exchanges )

        Also I must apologize for the misspelling of Asians and other typos in my posts , I am not using my normal device and this one is annoying and way too helpful with its autocorrect and it seems the incorrect spelling for Asians was stored in the spell checker . I really had to LOL at your insinuation that I was being deliberately disrespectful a s you may notice that Asians was also spelt correctly several times and I also misspelled Shonda Rhimes, and even my own culture – Caribbean was I disrespecting her and myself too ? ( or maybe I just can’t spell LOL) We both misspelt Jeesie at least once BTW

        Finally I want to say that I lurk here more than I post and have always admired and appreciated your commentary you do however sometimes have a tendency to present yourself as more ” woke ” or learned than anyone else and it can sometimes be a tad bit patronizing ?
        Basically though I think we are on the same page but now just talking at each other so I’m out
        One Love

  4. EbonyS says:

    Oh, we definitely care in the U.S. Black Twitter has been poppin off about this for about a week now. That’s how I first heard about it. Jamilah, Rod, etc have really good hot takes about it

  5. Ella says:

    Have there been any series about the prejudice against Irish people?

  6. Abbess Tansy says:

    I can see the point about Black British women being left out of the production is disappointing. It would have been great to see some of those individuals as a black woman myself. Erasure seems to be a standard.
    I think we as Americans should remember the show is depicting POC of the British black power movement not America’s. This is about the Brits own unique experiences with rascism and bigotry. We need to see through their lens. Hope this didn’t sound preachy and pompous.
    I’m interested in finding some reading material about this subject.

    • Naughty corner says:

      The concerns were raised by black British women

    • HK9 says:

      The questions were initially raised by Black British female journalists so this has nothing to do with being seen through an American lens. No one is imposing anything on anyone.

    • Abbess Tansy says:

      Thanks for clearing that up for me. I should have read the posts better.

  7. HK9 says:

    I find it interesting that Idris has a daughter and he never thought that seeing black women represented accurately on screen was important. That says a whole lot.

    • Abbess Tansy says:

      Especially since his daughter is a teenager now, I think?

    • Millie says:

      As a black woman, it is not surprising and doesn’t say anything new to me. Black women are universally a group of women not only shit on by other races but actively hated by our own race of men too. Black women always have black men’s backs but black men throw us the second they think they can have someone who is considered inherently better. Seen it my whole life and yes I am bitter and yes I am hurt. And people wonder why we as black women are so damn ‘bitter’ and angry at the world and at our men.

      You know what a black man once said to me about why he could never date a black woman, he said that we remind him too much of the things he hates (himself) of all his bad history (slavery). Eldrige Cleaver said the same. He said that at least white women and any other woman who isn’t black could make him forget that, make him believe he was something better. Black men act like black women weren’t there with them in slavery, like we didn’t get the brunt of the rapes or the beatings. We did and it is a collective memory that society will not let black women forget. Like Frantz Fanon says it is a psychology of oppression that takes place in the colonized mind.

      Black men have always focused on their own liberation at the expense of black women. It truly is a thankless job and I wish people would see that the point isn’t about how many Asians were involved in the black power movement in the UK but that black men contribute to ensuring that black women have nothing we can call our own. They contribute to our erasure because they hate us just as much as the rest of society.

      • Abbess Tansy says:

        Millie, I’m with you in that I sometimes feel bitter and hurt that my thoughts and feelings aren’t taken into consideration by Black men, also other races in general. I have felt and been used professionally and personally in my life. My ideas on the job have taken and little backup from anyone, especially Black men.
        Sometimes I have had the feeling that if a black woman wants to date outside of race black men hate it, as if they almost own our choices in potential mates. It’s as if we’re not good enough to date and marry but no one else can have us either. I get so d*mn tired of everything.

      • Millie says:

        Exactly! I think so many black men and non-black women who revel in being the prize of the come up men and better than us can really just have one another. I really don’t care anymore. I wash my hands of this situation and of the obtuseness of some of the posters who just don’t want to see why us black women are hurt.

      • HK9 says:

        I completely get how you feel. I think point of the discussion upthread has been lost. We have a black director & producer who has decided to make a series about the black power movement in the UK as if black women weren’t really there. The fact that Asians were involved isn’t the point-they were and are represented. The fact that some have been acknowledged and others erased is saying something. Black women have watched black men ascribe caring supportive attributes to women of other ethnicities while black women are demonized and sidelined when we’ve been supporting them all this time. Black women are done with being quietly supportive while black men undercut and erase their contributions. This is just another example of this.

        Black British women were there all day every day for that movement and to pretend otherwise is just.plain.wrong. Young people are going to watch this years from now and literally wonder why the contributions of black women are absent.

      • Missy says:

        Thank you for this enlightening comment, Millie. I wish it were up higher! When I read this story, I immediately wondered if Ridley and Idris’s subconscious bias against black women had something to do with the character casting

      • Miss J says:

        This is so incredibly sad but true.. I’m black and British and have been told similar things by black men.

        I’m involved in the creative industry and my circle of female friends were so excited when we heard about this project. We thought for once Black actresses would get a chance to play an empowering role honouring the women that came before us.. But sadly no..

        Roles for black actresses in the U.K. are sparse, roles for empowering tour de force characters are non existent.

        All of the black women I’ve spoken to could care less who John Ridley is married to, and yes we have no objection to an active female Asian protagonist but it just seems unconscionable that he would erase black women in the movement altogether yet happily portray a black woman as a traitor.

        I read somewhere that he’d written two pilots in America with Asian female leads that were rejected so it looks like he has his own agenda.

        For anyone interested here is a very measured balanced and honest review of the whole series.

  8. Joannie says:

    She’s beautiful!

  9. perplexed says:

    Is this story based on a real life Asian woman?

    • Naughty corner says:

      No it is loosely inspired by a black couple who were in the movement .the writer Ridley by his own admission decided to change the female lead to an Asian to reflect his personal life and Asian wife . There was also an Asian male activist from which inspiration was drawn

      • moon says:

        Yes, it is based on real life asian activists.

      • Naughty corner says:

        For the umpteenth time there were Asian women activists OK. HOWEVER the person who actually wrote the film as in the creator indicated (in a Q&A that is widely available on line) that HE decided to make PIntos character Asian because HE also has an ASian wife are you just gonna ignore that ?
        this may be new to you but people who were actually connected to the movement were actually talking about it before actors were cast and the initial dailies clearly stated that the story was loosely based on a BLACK couple again Ridley decided to change the Black woman to Asian .Another one of the creatives who name eludes me now also said Pintos casting could work as there was as Aain. MAN that was also their inspiration in the story telling

      • moon says:

        You’re cherry picking and ignoring the fact that John Ridley and the other producers also mentioned that Pinto’s character is based on Mala Sen.

      • E Israel says:

        To Moon: I acknowledge the role that Mala Sen played in the Movement, but she was one East Indian woman; in contrast there were many more black women who were leaders in the Movement. I think it would have been beautiful to have Mala as the co-lead of those black women, but she should never have been cast as the lead and love interest because East Indian women did not make the level of sacrifice and contributions as black women. Furthermore, East Indians, particularly those who share Pinto’s physical characteristics, view blacks as untouchables, according to a NYT report, India’s Lethal Race Problem,

    • E Israel says:

      I have read that it’s loosely based on Mela Sen, who was married to Farrukh Dhondy, another East Indian. So it makes no sense that Pinto, who portrays Sen would be romantically linked to a black character. Also, it is highly unlikely that an East Indian woman and black male would be romantically linked during this time period anyway because of the racial tensions between the two groups. I can only imagine how sisters would have felt if one of their Panthers was involved with a non black woman: traitor.

  10. E Israel says:

    I am a black woman born and reared in America, and I am pissed but not surprised about the casting because this is nothing more than a perpetuation of the trend: casting black men opposite non black women. We have seen this depiction in many of Spike Lee’s films where he cast Latino and white women as the love interests, in Starz’ Power, Netflix’s Luke Cage, and Will Smith’s films, to name a few.

    The elephant in the room is that black men, who are in positions of power, are complicit in casting non black women opposite black men because this is the image they want the world to see and embrace.Even if Ridley had chosen to use the Black Power Movement in the US as his backdrop, I assure you that he would have cast a nonblack woman as the love interest.

    You see this issue goes far beyond the historical representation of black women as it speaks to the disproportionate number of successful white collar black men who have chosen a nonblack woman as their mates, which is the real reason Ridley cast an Asian woman in the role, according to him. He doesn’t care about history, and he has no respect for black women even though his mama is one. He and black men like him feel they have excelled beyond black women, that they have earned the right to have other women on their arms. It is a manifestation of self hatred. Dr. Alvin Pouissant, a famous psychiatrist and author, stated sometime ago that in America, black masculinity is defined as a very dark skin black man with classical African features and build; in contrast, black femininity is defined as a very light skin black woman, with Anglo features and hair, and these are the images that have been perpetuated for decades. The difference is the black actresses were usually light skin but black. Then the light skin black actress was replaced by the bi-racial actress, who is being replaced with women of other races. The disappearance of black women in film and TV is also a pattern of black males’ marrying habits. In today’s society, the black male doesn’t want the light skin black woman or the mulatto; he wants strange fruit: a completely different race.

    Furthermore, no one is arguing that some Asians, namely East Indian men, did not collaborate with blacks during the Black Power Movement (BPM) but that ” Black women – including Althea Jones-Lecointe, Olive Morris and Gail Lewis – weren’t just part of the history of the black power movement, they led it in Britain,” Kehinde Andrews.

    Moreover, Asian women don’t have to protect or defend their image. They don’t have to worry about being cast as a negative stereotype or that nonAsian women will be routinely cast opposite their leading Asian men because that simply won’t happen. Their men have more respect for them and their culture, a standard that black men like Ridley and Idris obviously don’t possess.