If you didn’t realize that casting for big Hollywood movies has really nothing to do with who is the best actor for the role, James Gunn recently made it crystal clear when he implied he already has roles for Chris Pratt and Pom Klementieff in the DC Universe.

Director James Gunn attends the Seoul Fan Event for Marvel Studios’ GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL. 3 in Seoul, South Korea on April 19, 2023. Photo by Ho Chang.

Gunn previously asserted that Chukwudi Iwuji was the best actor for the role of the High Evolutionary in Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 despite Iwuji looking nothing like the High Evolutionary.

(L-R): Miriam Shor as Recorder Vim, Chukwudi Iwuji as The High Evolutionary, and Nico Santos as Recorder Theel in Marvel Studios’ Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. Photo by Jessica Miglio. © 2023 MARVEL.

RELATED: James Gunn Defends The Race Swapping Of The High Evolutionary In ‘Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3’ By Accusing Fan Of Having “Racist Presumptions”

In fact, not only did Gunn say Iwuji was the best actor, but when questioned on why he didn’t cast an actor that looks like the High Revolutionary, Gunn accused the questioner of having “racist presumptions.”

He wrote on Instagram, “I chose the best actor, period, and the best person for the role. I don’t give a shit what ethnicity Chukwudi Iwuji is, so stop with your racist presumption on WHY he was chosen. (And, by the way, he’s playing a guy who’s almost always purple in the color.)

James Gunn Instagram

Now, in a post on Threads, Gunn implied he already has roles carved out for both Chris Pratt and Pom Klementieff.

A user requested, “I would like some from the cast of GotG to guest star in the next season of PeaceMaker, as themselves, like Chris Pratt being himself or Pom herself.. ”

Gunn replied, “There are reasons I wouldn’t want either of those actors to play themselves in the DCU!”

James Gunn Threads

RELATED: James Gunn Explains Why He Gender-Swapped Cosmo In ‘Guardians Of The Galaxy Vol. 3’

Gunn isn’t the only person to reveal that being the best actor for the role does not always land you the role. Blue Beetle actor Xolo Maridueña recently revealed to Variety that he didn’t even audition for the role of Jaime Reyes in the film.

He recalled to the outlet what he thought when he got the role, “I didn’t audition for this. How do they know that I’m the right person?”

Jamie Reyes (Xolo Maridueña) has words with Carapax (Raoul Max Trujillo) in Blue Beetle (2023), DC Studios

Jamie Reyes (Xolo Maridueña) has words with Carapax (Raoul Max Trujillo) in Blue Beetle (2023), DC Studios

Amazon Studios shockingly published as part of their Inclusion Policy that one of their goals was: “Casting actors whose identity (gender, gender identity, nationality, race/ethnicity, sexual orientation, disability) aligns with the character they will be playing.”

However, they promptly ignored their own policy when they cast Ayoola Smart to play Aviendha as the Aiel warrior and love interest to Rand al’Thor.

Aviendha played by Ayoola Smart, Perrin Aybara played by Marcus Rutherford in The Wheel of Time (2023), Prime Video

RELATED: Amazon Studios Violates Their Own Inclusion Policy, Race Swaps Aviendha For The Wheel Of Time Season 2

Given it’s obvious that the best actors for the job do not always get the job and many actors do not even have to audition for roles, that begs the question as to why and how actors are cast.

Obviously, in the case of  James Gunn there’s probably an aspect of nepotism to it. The idea of Pratt and Klementieff already having roles carved out seems to be from the relationship they built with Gunn while working on the Guardians of the Galaxy franchise.

The same could be said for Gunn’s brother Sean Gunn, who already has role in the DC Universe as G.I. Robot in the upcoming Creature Commandos animated series. Those are the obvious examples and there’s probably more, and it’s not always going to be coming from Gunn, there’s always actors relationships with casting directors and other studio executives.

Sean Gunn as Kraglin in Marvel Studios’ Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3. Photo courtesy of Marvel Studios. © 2023 MARVEL.

RELATED: ‘The Witcher’ Casting Director Admits To Using Her Job To “Affect Change” In Viewers And Manipulate “Their Unconscious Bias”

Speaking of casting directors, Sophie Holland, a casting director who has worked on a number of Netflix series including Wednesday and The Witcher, as well as Prime Video’s The Peripheral informed Variety that her personal ideology affects who she casts.

She said, “I think the first time I felt like a casting director was when I worked on something called The Kill Team by Dan Krauss, which was the story of American soldiers over in Afghanistan. It was the first time I understood that casting wasn’t just about finding beautiful people who could do the American accent convincingly, but that casting could have a real, profound impact on the people watching it.”

Anya Chalotra as Yennefer in The Witcher (2021), Netflix

She later added, “You can affect change in whatever tiny way because you are in people’s homes and they’re watching this world. And that sort of solidified when I had a child, she’s five now, and I thought how hard it is to be a girl.”

“I remember thinking I have to help her because she’s going to come under attack, just like I did, just because she’s a girl,” Holland elaborated. “Maybe she’ll be lucky and get to nine before somebody calls her a b***h. And it made me so sad that she was going to experience that and I couldn’t protect her from that.”

“But what I could do is change the way people see women through casting. I can make them powerful and empowering and then the floodgates will open to them,” she asserted.

Laurence O’Fuarain as Fjall, Sophia Brown as Éile, in The Witcher: Blood Origin (2022) via Netflix

Laurence O’Fuarain as Fjall and Sophia Brown as Éile, in The Witcher: Blood Origin (2022) via Netflix

RELATED: Netflix’s ‘The Witcher’ Writer Javier Grillo-Marxuach Tries To Claim That Series Scriptwriters “Read/Respect The Books”, Immediately Disproves His Own Argument

Holland went on to reveal she applies this theory to every job she takes on, “I do apply this theory to everything and it makes me push boundaries a little harder because I think representation is important. Not just for women, but all minority groups.”

“Like, people have different physical abilities and I think it’s important they’re seen in strong and fierce roles. Realizing this was a real moment of falling in love with my craft in a way that feels very specific to me,” she said.

Anya Chalotra as Yennefer in The Witcher (2019), Netflix

She even detailed why she cast Anya Chalotra as Yennefer, “I am always the first to champion diversity in all its glory. One that springs to mind was the character of Yennefer on The Witcher. Lauren Schmidt Hissrich is the showrunner and we work so well together and she’s so open to conversations.”

“In the book, she’s described as the most beautiful woman in the world. This was a few years ago and I’d like to think things have changed. But when you think about people’s unconscious bias – especially in the fantasy world, it felt like these worlds were predominantly white. And I remember saying, ‘I feel like we need to challenge what people think of as the standard of beauty. And having a woman of color in this role does incredibly powerful things to the people watching,” she admitted.

Anya Chalotra as Yennefer in The Witcher (2019), Netflix

RELATED: Marvel Studios Casting Director Confirms Studio Will Continue To Embrace Their Representation And Diversity Agenda That Is Slowly Killing The MCU

Marvel Studios casting director Sarah Finn shared a similar sentiment when she told TheWrap, “I will say that after ‘Avengers: Endgame,’ it was one of the things that really fueled me. You know, there’s that moment of ‘Wait, where do we go from here?’ After ‘Endgame,’ it felt so final. And then of course, that impulse is we go with more representation, more diversity, we go younger, there’s a whole fresh wave to explore here.”

“And for me personally, that’s really given me tremendous energy to kind of move forward,” she added.

(L-R): Kingo (Kumail Nanjiani), Karun (Harish Patel), Ikaris (Richard Madden), Sprite (Lia McHugh), and Sersi (Gemma Chan) in Marvel Studios’ ETERNALS. Photo by Sophie Mutevelian. © 2021 Marvel Studios. All Rights Reserved.

The studios also have quotas. The Walt Disney Company, the parent company of Marvel Studios, noted on their Reimagine Tomorrow website that they had the goal of  making 50% of regular and recurring characters across Disney General Entertainment scripted content come from underrepresented groups by 2022.

Reimagine Tomorrow Website

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They have since updated the website. It now reads, “We are committed to inspiring a more inclusive world by reimagining the way we tell stories and who tells them. Our intention is to broaden access and diversity in our industry by adopting inclusion standards across Disney General Entertainment and live-action Studio productions by the end of 2022, with the goal of advancing representation in front of and behind the camera, in marketing and more.”

The Walt Disney Company's Reimagine Tomorrow Website

The Walt Disney Company’s Reimagine Tomorrow Website

However, it also includes ABC Entertainment’s Inclusion Standards, which calls for 50% or more of regular and recurring written characters come from Underrepresented Groups. Not only do characters have to come from Underrepresented Groups, but 50% of actors should as well.

The standards also include quotas for producers, writing staff, directors, and ironically casting directors.

ABC Entertainment Inclusion Standards

RELATED: Amazon Studios, The Studio Behind Lord of the Rings And Wheel Of Time, Announces New Inclusion Policy

As noted above, Amazon Studios also has quotas in the form of their Inclusion Policy. It states, “Aiming to include one character from each of the following categories in speaking roles, with minimum 50% of these to be women: LGBTQIA+, person with a disability, and three regionally underrepresented race/ethnic/cultural groups. A single character can fulfill one or more of these identities.”

WarnerMedia also announced a diversity policy back in 2018. The policy at the time stated, “WarnerMedia companies, Warner Bros., HBO and Turner, have long been committed to diversity and inclusion as moral and business imperatives. It is essential that our content and creative partners reflect the diversity of our society and the world around us. Together with other production companies, networks, guilds, unions, talent agencies and others in the industry, we all must ensure there is greater inclusion of women, people of color, the LGBTQ+ community, those with disabilities and other underrepresented groups in greater numbers both in front of and behind the camera.”

The company added, “For our part, WarnerMedia pledges to use our best efforts to ensure that diverse actors and crew members are considered for film, television and other projects, and to work with directors and producers who also seek to promote greater diversity and inclusion in our industry. To that end, in the early stages of the production process, we will engage with our writers, producers and directors to create a plan for implementing this commitment to diversity and inclusion on our projects, with the goal of providing opportunities for individuals from under-represented groups at all levels. And, we will issue an annual report on our progress.”

Aldis Hodge as Black Adam (2022), Warner Bros. Pictures

Underpinning these policies and actions is a demoralization campaign outlined by Yuri Bezmenov that employed psychological warfare techniques to “change the perception of reality of every American to such an extent that despite an abundance of information no one is able to come to sensible conclusions in the interests of defending themselves, their family, their community, and their country.”

He elaborated, “It’s a great brainwashing process which goes very slow and it’s divided in four basic stages. The first one being demoralization. It takes from 15 to 20 years to demoralize a nation. Why that many years? Because this is the minimum number of years which requires to educate one generation of students in the country of your enemy- exposed to the ideology of the enemy in other words Marxism, Leninism ideology is pumped into the soft heads of at least three generations of American students without being challenged or counterbalanced by the basic values of Americanism. American patriotism.”

RELATED: Netflix Partners With Radical Activist And Ms. Marvel Head Writer Bisha K. Ali For Diversity And Inclusion Fellowship

However, YouTuber Academic Agent takes it a step further and asserts that this demoralization and psychological warfare is focused on creating an original sin for target nations to make them more pliable.

He explains, “If the original sin of the Germans was to be the Holocaust each other country would find its own original sin. In Britain it was the Empire and colonialism. In America it was slavery and racism. … All of these things have coalesced into one unifying concept called whiteness. And for the re-education program finally to be completed, of course, the symbols of these things must be destroyed or else the new mindset cannot take root.”

What do you make of Gunn already carving out roles for Chris Pratt and Pom Klementieff? What do you make of this theory that Hollywood casting is done to root out the symbols if so-called whiteness so the new mindset can take over?

NEXT: Disney Adds “Inclusion Key” To Training For Theme Park Cast Members

  • About The Author

    John F. Trent
    Founder and Editor-in-Chief

    John is the Editor-in-Chief here at Bounding Into Comics. He is a massive Washington Capitals fan, lover of history, and likes to dabble in economics and philosophy.