Actors lie about their height. Maybe they shouldn’t.
It’s incredibly difficult and frustrating to become an actor in Hollywood. Not only do you have to fight for roles with hundreds of people, but you can also drop out because of physical characteristics. It really is a crap shoot.
This has led many actors to lie about their appearance on casting lists. That includes their heights. They usually say they are taller to be considered for more roles. This results in longer casting processes as people are brought in and examined, checked, etc.
Guardian of the Galaxy and Suicide squad Director James Gunn recently took to Twitter to lament these lies.
I wish actors (especially men) would tell the truth about their size when casting. Casting an entire show can be a balance between many things, including height, and male actors exaggerate 50% in their resumes about how tall they sometimes are.
– James Gunn (@JamesGunn) June 13, 2021
Gunn argues that lying about your height will lose you as many jobs as you think it will get you. It can also cause you to be marked so as not to bring in later. Often times, directors have a vision in mind of how big or how small the characters should be. Gunn needed Guardian As a specific example, he said he wanted really great actors to play roles, so he dated the guys like Lee Pace, Dave Bautista, and Chris Pratt, all of whom were tall.
While Gunn’s explanation seemed harmless and well-intentioned, it rubbed actor Anson Mount in the wrong direction, who argued that actor size was part of sexism, masculinity, and male dominance in the industry.
Well James. It shouldn’t matter, somehow. The use of “size” in industry is an abbreviation for male dominance / “masculinity” (especially in relation to female counterparts). Here’s a better idea: give us your measurements when we walk through the door. We will probably not be challenged. https://t.co/QMNS3levwa
– Anson-Berg (@ansonmount) June 15, 2021
While I think there is a lot of conversation going on about sexism and male dominance in Hollywood, this could take the argument a bit far. As some commentators pointed out, Tom Cruise is short of stature and has had a good career, although we should note that he often faces actresses who appear shorter than he is (through the magic of the film). That is, outside of Eyes wide closedwhere he played opposite of his then-wife Nicole Kidman, who is much taller than the actor.
Gunn responded respectfully, saying that all of his casting decisions had to do with storytelling.
I don’t know why it hit such a nerve @ansonmountbut as a director it’s important because when you’re shooting two or more people, the height makes a difference in the shot. And sometimes you are looking for height differences or parities. It’s about storytelling. https://t.co/hsyhYUOPnp
– James Gunn (@JamesGunn) June 15, 2021
What do you think of this ongoing debate?
Let us know in the comments.