Indian actor Freida Pinto was left in tears after UK-based Black Lives Matter activists criticised her appearance in a new civil rights TV series during a live panel.
Pinto stars alongside Idris Elba in new Sky Atlantic drama Guerilla, which tells the story of the Black Power movement in 70s London, and attended a special screening event last night when the confrontation occurred.
The Slumdog Millionaire actor was reduced to tears on stage as Black Lives Matter members – who Sky Atlantic confirmed had been invited to the London event – accused the show of “black erasure” for its usage of an Asian lady as its lead.
Pinto was visibly too upset to answer questions posed to her with an audience member stating: “Frieda was left stunned and didn’t know what to do when a barrage of questions came in about why they had cast an Asian lady as a lead character.
“She sat at the front of the stage and tears rolled down her cheeks as John tried to get them to understand that being called Black in the Seventies referred to all people of colour from former British colonies."
The series’ writer, 12 Years a Slave scribe John Ridley, attempted to appease the activists, but to no avail.
“John then spent around 40 minutes trying to speak to them after the event, but they were really rude in rolling their eyes and answering back saying he didn’t understand. It was ridiculous following his background.”
Pinto’s co-star Babou Ceesay reportedly also tried to have a conversation with the activists.
Guerilla starts this Thursday on Sky Atlantic with the first of six episodes.