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Racist criticism is pouring in towards the play ‘Romeo and Juliet’ starring actor Tom Holland. This happened after some netizens protested after it was revealed that a black actress would play the role of Juliet.

According to American entertainment media Deadline and TMZ on the 5th (local time), the production company Jamie Lloyd Company revealed the entire cast, including the actress playing Juliet, last week. Prior to this, it became a hot topic when it was revealed that Tom Holland, famous for Marvel’s Spider-Man series, had been cast as the male protagonist Romeo.

According to the production company, black actress Francesca Amewudah Rivers was selected to play Holland’s counterpart. Rivers appeared in the BBC comedy series ‘Bad Education’.

Afterwards, racist criticism targeting Rivers continued on social media. There were reactions such as “It makes no sense for Juliet to be played by a black actress,” along with personal attacks. TMZ said, “Comments criticizing her appearance, fashion sense, etc. as well as various hateful comments are pouring in,” and “They are very mean and awful.”

On the other hand, there were also comments cheering for Rivers. Netizens said, “Juliet is just fictional character. It shouldn’t matter who plays the fictional character,” “A black actress can also play Juliet well,” and “Rivers is good enough to play Juliet.”

As criticism continued for several days, the production company issued a statement directly on the 5th. The production company said, “After the cast was announced, deplorable racial discrimination (remarks) directed at our company members poured in online,” and “This must stop.”

“We are working with an outstanding group of artists,” they said. “They should be free to create their work without being harassed online.” “We will continue to support and protect everyone at our employee at all costs,” “We will not tolerate this and will report any abuse. Such harassment is not tolerated online, in our industry, or in our society.”

1. This isn’t Snow White we’re talking about, people should let this slide

2. It’s not a problem about race, it’s about how her visuals are lacking compared to Juliet

3. It’s been a long time since casting agencies have stopped caring about race…

4. Both leads’ images don’t match the plot, and we’ve seen a lot of instances like that in the acting industry already. The producers are just doing whatever they want 

5. Not only about black people, but we’re even seeing women play Romeo in plays now, the people with a narrow view are the worst ㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋㅋ

6. Who cares, it’s not like it’s historyㅋㅋㅋ

7. No but they’ve always cast actors of different races for musicals and plays;;;??? Looks like there are still many people swearing about it without knowing what’s already custom in other countries

8. I don’t care if she’s black but her looks are a bit disappointing. I don’t think there will be any chemistry between them 

9. It’s not like she’s a historical figure, who cares

10. Please just make it fun 

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