Ghostbusters' Leslie Jones defends 'street smart' black female character

'Why can't a regular person be a Ghostbuster?'

Jack Shepherd
Sunday 06 March 2016 10:44

Response to the first Ghostbusters trailer has been somewhat surprising; while it was expected that whiny ‘fans’ would express their anger at an all-female team, no-one thought the most controversial part would be Leslie Jones’ character.

Many highlighted a problem with the film’s casting; the combination of three white, educated scientist characters played against a black character who is seen to rely on "street smarts".

It is an obvious call back to the original, yet even then actor Ernie Hudson had a problem with his character. He wrote in an essay to Entertainment Weekly: “I look back on Ghostbusters in a very fun way, but it’s got so many mixed feelings and emotions attached to it.

“When I originally got the script, the character of Winston was amazing and I thought it would be career-changing. The character came in right at the very beginning of the movie and had an elaborate background: he was an Air Force major something, a demolitions guy. It was great.”

Ghostbusters trailer

“The night before filming begins, however, I get this new script and it was shocking. The character was gone. Instead of coming in at the very beginning of the movie, like page eight, the character came in on page 68 after the Ghostbusters were established. His elaborate background was all gone, replaced by me walking in and saying, ‘If there’s a steady paycheck in it, I’ll believe anything you say.’ So that was pretty devastating.”

However, Leslie Jones isn’t experience any regrets over her at the moment. In a Twitter tirade, the actress addressed the criticism head on, asking “Why can't a regular person be a Ghostbuster?”

Jones then Tweeted out a fan letter she had received, defending the character.

Hopefully, when the movie comes around this July, she won’t be the seemingly “add on” character some Tweeters have described her as.

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