Leguizamo regularly promotes Latino participation in the entertainment industry.
In response to the recent casting of James Franco as Cuban revolutionary Fidel Castro in the upcoming independent film “Alina of Cuba,” John Leguizamo posted a statement on Instagram. On August 4, Variety declared Franco’s employment. Miguel Bardem is the film’s director, working from a screenplay by Jose Rivera and Nilo Cruz.
“Why is this continuing happening?” Leguizamo enquired on Instagram about Franco’s casting as the historical figure from Cuba. “How is Hollywood not just ignoring us but also taking our stories? No more appropriation from streamers and Hollywood! Boycott! This is awful! Additionally, it is quite difficult to recount a narrative without seeming egotistical, which is unacceptable! Franco is not Latino, but I have no issue with him.
Production on “Alina of Cuba” is set to start on August 15 with filming taking place in Colombia. Ana Villafae, who plays the titular role Alina Fernandez, Castro’s daughter, will co-star with Franco in the movie. The story follows Alina as a critic of Castro’s rule in Cuba and as his illegitimate daughter before she emigrated to Spain in 1993. The real-life Fernandez, who is taking part in the movie as an on-set creative and biographical consultant, endorsed Franco’s casting as Fidel Castro.
Alanna de la Rosa, Maria Cecilia Botero, Harding Junior, Sian Chiong, and Rafael Ernesto Hernandez are among the supporting actors in the movie. Additionally, Má Maestro makes an appearance in the movie as Natalia Revuelta, the Cuban socialite who had an affair with Castro and gave birth to Alina.
Leguizamo frequently promotes Latino representation in Hollywood, saying in 2020 to People magazine, “We’re fewer than 1% of the tales presented by Hollywood, streaming media, and networks when we’re nearly 20% of the population, 25% of the U.S. box office. Simply said, I think it’s harmful for kids not to see good reflections of themselves.
Read the entirety of Leguizamo’s post about Franco’s casting below.