Peter Dinklage slams Hollywood hypocrisy of Disney's Snow White remake

Los Angeles, California - Peter Dinklage has some thoughts about hypocrisy among Hollywood progressives.

Peter Dinklage in a scene from the 2021 movie Cyrano.
Peter Dinklage in a scene from the 2021 movie Cyrano.  © IMAGO / Picturelux

The Game of Thrones star was discussing comedy on Monday’s edition of the WTF With Marc Maron podcast when the conversation turned to confused thinking in the entertainment industry.

"There’s a lot of hypocrisy going on, I gotta say, from being somebody who’s a little bit unique," Dinklage said, noting that he had had a "front row seat" to a lot of it.

As a case in point, he brought up Disney’s upcoming remake of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs, which features West Side Story star Rachel Zegler in the "skin white as snow" lead role. Zegler, who is of Colombian and Polish descent, had to fend off a few haters when her casting was announced last June.

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Dinklage’s concern had to do not with her casting, but with the contradictory thinking behind the entire effort.

"I was a little taken aback by – they were very proud to cast a Latino actress as Snow White, but you’re still telling the story of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Take a step back and see what you’re doing there. It makes no sense to me. Because you’re progressive in one way and you’re still making that f****** backward story about seven dwarfs who live in a cave."

Per the original story, the dwarfs actually live in a cottage in the woods, as they also did in Disney’s 1937 animated classic.

Dinklage took on a light tone as he went on, saying in an over-the-top tone, "Have I done nothing to advance the cause, from my soapbox? I guess I’m not loud enough."

"I don’t know what studio that was," he added, "but they were so proud of that. And all love and respect to the actress and the people who thought they were doing the right thing, but... what are you doing?"

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Dinklage said he had been criticized for playing French actor Herve Villechaize, who some assumed was Filipino.
Dinklage said he had been criticized for playing French actor Herve Villechaize, who some assumed was Filipino.  © IMAGO / ZUMA Wire

As far as which studio is behind the updated effort, there’s a big hint in the 2023 movie’s title: Disney’s Snow White. Disney had no immediate comment Tuesday when contacted by the Los Angeles Times.

Dinklage, who is white, also mentioned that people complained about him being cast as actor Herve Villechaize, who was often incorrectly perceived to be Filipino, for the HBO movie My Dinner With Herve.

"There was a lot of early backlash: 'How dare he play a Filipino?'" Dinklage said. "They were so liberal-minded – and I am as liberal as anybody – but they were so convinced, because of how he looked, Herve, that he was Filipino, which is ... if that’s not racism ... He’s a Frenchman, and his physical condition made him look very cherubic."

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Dinklage said he was hanging out at the time with the actor’s brother, Patrick Villechaize, who was just laughing at all of it.

But back to Snow White. Maron said that, as with other revivals, "They know they got a cash cow with that story," and that trumped everything.

"Because people don’t. Take. Risks," Dinklage shot back.

"In their mind, they’ve got a no-brainer here. We can win by appearing to be progressive, by casting a Latina, and we can just run money through this story again ...," Maron said. "I don’t think anybody has ever probably said ... the dwarf community is tired of this..."

"Is there one?" Dinklage asked about the "dwarf community" his host referenced. "I don’t know."

"That’s the thing," Maron said. "In order to seek representation, you have to have a community movement. Which also is the heart of what becomes the issue of wokeness."

"But it’s such a minority," Dinklage said. "And I’m not affiliated with any groups or anything, but it’s such a minority that it causes a real 'Who the f*** cares.'"

"And that’s entertainment."

Cover photo: IMAGO / Picturelux

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