Why The Upcoming Harriet Tubman Movie Is So Timely, Even 106 Years After Her Death

“I just don’t think that there should be those kind of rules in movies. I want an actress that I can believe, and that I can get behind, and that I trust to bring a character to life. It’s art and it’s acting. There has to be things that feel right about it. So, when I’m looking at an actress, and I’m saying, ‘Okay, I’m looking for a petite woman who’s an athlete, who’s spiritual, who’s powerful, and who has recent ancestors from West Africa,’ and who I’m looking at [is] a petite, powerful athlete, singer with recent ancestors from West Africa — to me, it’s right. It’s correct.So, though I really appreciate and respect the argument, I do. I understand it. I respect all kinds of arguments about those things, and a sensitivity to our own history and ownership. For me, thinking of making rules or having to have a passport to play characters is a little bit dangerous.”