Upcoming ‘The American Society Of Magical Negroes’ Movie Shamelessly Describes White People As “The Most Dangerous Animal On The Planet”
The American Society of Magical Negroes, an upcoming self-described comedy produced by Focus Features, has recently released its first trailer — shamelessly describing ‘white people’ as “the most dangerous animal on the planet.”
Making his directorial debut, comedian Kobi Libii is at the helm of the upcoming satirical film starring Justice Smith (Detective Pikachu, Dungeons & Dragons: Honour Among Thieves) and fellow comedian David Alan Grier (Blankman, Clifford the Big Red Dog).
Per the official synopsis, The American Society of Magical Negroes is “a fresh, satirical comedy about a young man, Aren, who is recruited into a secret society of magical Black people who dedicate their lives to a cause of utmost importance: making white people’s lives easier.”
The trailer introduces us to Smith’s character, who appears to be a new recruit of the American Society of Magical Negroes being trained by Grier’s character.
The specific line of dialogue labelling white people as ‘dangerous animals’ is uttered by Grier halfway through the trailer, as his character prepares to explain what the mission of this magical society is, revealing that their main goal is to keep white people happy — with their discomfort levels being measured in “white tears.”
“What’s the most dangerous animal on the planet?” he rhetorically asks. Right after Smith’s character replies with “shark,” he is immediately corrected by Grier, who says, “White people when they feel uncomfortable.”
“White people feeling uncomfortable precedes a lot of bad stuff for us,” he continued. “That’s why we fight white discomfort every day. Because the happier they are, the safer we are.”
In an interview with Black Entertainment Television (BET), Libii provided more details about his motivation to make a film like The American Society of Magical Negroes, revealing that he was not a fan of these particular type of stories.
“It all sort of starts with the Magical Negro trope,” the director prefaced. “I’m sure you’re familiar with it, but just to define it on my own terms, I think of the Magical Negro as a kind of stock Black character; a Black best friend character who is only focused on helping the white hero.”
He went on, “They don’t really have an inner life, and they don’t have their own things going on. They’re just relentlessly focused on helping this white character grow in most cases, and I always thought that was so funny. For whatever reason, the idea that there’s a white writer who pictures the thing we do in the morning is getting up and trying to help them.”
“I found it so absurd and incorrect and funny that I wanted to blow it out and criticize it, but also use it as a way to talk about other stuff,” Libii further explained. “What it’s like to grow up as a Black person in this culture and some of the wild and fantastical things we have to do to survive. To me, that’s the origin story of the film.”
Libii would go on to reveal that he’s not concerned about audiences not understanding the message he’s trying to convey with The American Society of Magical Negroes, especially for a film with such a title.
“Not particularly, because it’s one of those things that like, even if you don’t know the term, you know,” told BET. “It’s Spike Lee’s term, he’s the one who coined it. You know that Black character that’s just there to be nebulously Black in the background.”
He elaborated, “They’re not really a person and we all can picture it. Beyond the movie, we all know what it’s like to feel pushed to the side and have somebody else pushed to the front.”
As of writing, the official trailer, shared to Focus Features’ YouTube channel, has been given a of 2.7 thousand thumbs up and disliked over 25 thousand times with 2,282,448 views and counting.
To the surprise of absolutely no one, the trailer for The American Society of Magical Negroes has been overwhelmingly disliked by viewers, who have severely criticised the film’s premise, called out its lack of tact, and accused it of promoting racial division.
“This movie should be nicknamed ‘“’The American Society of Magical Racism’ imagine trying to buy a ticket for this……man this is going to bomb hard,” read a comment by YouTube user @Blad3sofWaR.
“It’s nice to see so many of us come together to express how disappointing and terrible just the concept of this is and how baffling it is that it was ever made,” read another comment.
“This is an embarrassment for everyone involved,” declared @user-pv6rw3ls3p, adding, “How do you even explain to someone that you agreed to be in this, make it, screen it… just wow.”
“This is absolutely insane,” pointed out @rogerrabbit3699. “I can’t believe so many people thought this was a good idea.”
“A classic story of wonder, romance, and racial division,” simply declared @polskiOgorka, including a happy emoji to really hammer the point home.