Trans Actors Slam Scarlett Johansson for Rub & Tug Role

Scarlett Johansson is on the receiving end of some pretty severe criticism. The trans community in Hollywood is objecting to her taking on the role of a trans crime boss in Rub & Tug. (The film follows the true story of Dante “Tex” Gill, who ran massage/prostitution parlors). 

Johansson is no stranger to blowback: she was accused of doing “whiteface” when she took on a role typically depicted as Asian in Ghost in the Shell. Rupert Sanders, Ghost’s director, is also helming Rub & Tug. 

When Johansson learned of the controversy, she blew it off, saying through her rep that critics “can be directed to Jeffrey Tambor, Jared Leto, and Felicity Huffman’s reps for comment.”

That seemed to only make matters worse, with Orange Is the New Black’s Laverne Cox and trans activist Jen Richards suggesting The Hollywood Reporter should devote a roundtable to the subject of trans casting.