Remember when Ridley Scott thought it was a super cool idea to cast a bunch of white folk to play ancient Egyptians for Exodus: Gods and Kings? It was a move that earned the biblical epic critical scorn* and disappointing box office returns. But hey, Scott turned around and did The Martian, which included a diverse cast and was awesome!
Meanwhile, director Alex Proyas has filled his ancient Egypt drama with, well take a look.
That’s Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Gerard Butler, and Brenton Thwaites. Not scoring a character poster but also starring are Geoffrey Rush as Ra, Abbey Lee as Anat, and Rufus Sewell as Urshu. But it’s not all face-palm-worthy whitewashing! Chadwick Boseman, Elodie Young, and Courtney Eaton also scored character posters.
Considering how stacked this cast is with white folks, I’m worry these three posters might not be a sign of their characters’ importance to the plot as much as damage control. Unfortunately, the official synopsis supports my cynicism:
Magic, monsters, gods and madness reign throughout the palaces and pyramids of the Nile River Valley in this action-adventure inspired by the classic mythology of Egypt. With the survival of mankind hanging in the balance, an unexpected hero takes a thrilling journey to save the world and rescue his true love. Set (Gerard Butler), the merciless god of darkness, has usurped Egypt’s throne, plunging the once peaceful and prosperous empire into chaos and conflict. With only a handful of heroic rebels opposing Set’s savage rule, Bek (Brenton Thwaites), a bold and defiant mortal, enlists the aid of powerful god Horus (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) in an unlikely alliance against the evil overlord. As their breathtaking battle against Set and his henchmen take them into the afterlife and across the heavens, both god and mortal must pass tests of courage and sacrifice if they hope to prevail in the spectacular final confrontation.
Gods of Egypt opens February 26th, 2016.
*Kristy Puchko admits the petulant God child didn’t help.