The Londoner: Star Wars co-stars back criticism of role, says John Boyega

·3-min read
Getty Images
Getty Images

John Boyega has explained why he spoke out against structural racism in the Star Wars films — and revealed he has the support of his castmates, including fellow Brit Daisy Ridley.

In a widely-praised interview last month, the Peckham-born actor claimed his role was less “nuanced” than those of white actors in the Disney franchise’s latest instalments. Boyega has now said he did so in order to “fulfil his job” and speak up for his character, Finn.

“We all know that what makes roles so lucrative [are] the moments you give them,” he said. “If Captain America… isn’t given the scenes… we won’t think he’s cool. Why shouldn’t black characters and black actors also fight for that same kind of representation?”

He added that he had the “full support” of his co-stars and that Ridley, who plays Rey, had got in touch with him. “I got a text message from Daisy, I mean we talk all the time,” he said. “I’m really, really close with my castmates.”

Boyega, who is in Steve McQueen’s upcoming Small Axe series, said he was open to more Star Wars films if they would have him. “I’m alive, that’s one thing,” he joked, adding that he wants Ridley to be there too. “I wouldn’t want to be running around by myself or anything.”

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Izzard: At least it's not the bubonic plague

(BBC)
(BBC)

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(Getty Images)
(Getty Images)

The Queen has a second secret career. After being revealed as James Bond’s colleague in the 2012 Olympic opening ceremony, she will now appear solving crimes in detective book The Windsor Knot, out Thursday. The audiobook is read by ex-Miss Moneypenny Samantha Bond.

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(FilmMagic)
(FilmMagic)

BEN Wheatley, the Rebecca director, says an upcoming horror film of his has a soundtrack based on screaming plants, recorded via electrodes on their leaves. He tells Edith Bowman’s podcast how it works: “You touch their leaves and they go ‘ahhhh’”. Jeepers creepers.

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SW1A

(PA Archive/PA Images)
(PA Archive/PA Images)

RUPA HUQ MP tells us the best way for Labour MPs to get things done in this Parliament is to buddy up with a Tory MP.

Huq has been arguing alongside Conservative MP David Davis for vitamin D to be offered as a potential help against coronavirus. After Huq made a point of order about vitamin D, “Davis was on the blower pretty quickly” and set up a meeting with Health Secretary Matt Hancock. The Government has since announced it would change its messaging around vitamin D.

Huq says Labour MPs now need to pair with “a heavyweight from the other side” as they can’t win votes as they did in the 2017 Parliament. One MP recently turned to her in the voting lobby and said “do you remember when this used to matter?”

Political buddies — so hot right now.