John Leguizamo Blasts Hollywood For Treatment Of Latinos

John Leguizamo says more Latinos are needed in the upper echelons of film studios in order to facilitate more Latino roles and stories.

By Chad Langen | Published

John Leguizamo has never been one to shy away from voicing his concerns about political issues, and he often takes to social media to share his opinions. He recently criticized the all-white cast of the upcoming Super Mario Bros. remake following the release of the film’s first trailer, slamming the flick’s lack of Latinx leads. Now, according to Yahoo!, the 62-year-old actor blasted Hollywood in an in-depth op-ed published in the Los Angeles Times, calling out the industry for its treatment of Latino people.

In the article, John Leguizamo points out the obstacles Latino people run into when attempting to find success in the film and television industries, insisting an extremely small number of Latin studio heads is a huge reason as to why there’s a lack of representation. He also believes that if all of the white actors were replaced with Latin talent in a high-profile flick like Top Gun or an acclaimed television series like Succession, they would both still be hits.

The actor is confident that there are ways to remedy the lack of representation for Latino people, but he asserts that “you have to be willing to put us on.”

John Leguizamo also stated in the recent op-ed that he’s been preaching the same sermon throughout his entire career. “We need a better pipeline for Latinos in movies, TV shows and plays,” he said. “We need a system for our stories and our projects.”

Beginning his career in the 1980s as a stand-up comedian, John Leguizamo is now an Emmy Award-winning actor with over 150 performance credits on his resume. Although he’s admitted in the past that he’s benefitted from being a light-skinned Latino, getting roles in projects hasn’t always been easy for him.

john leguizamo
John Leguizamo in the upcoming Christmas action flick Violent Night

Earlier this year, he told Nick Barili in his new series Seen that he was cut from a project after a Latin actress was cast, and Leguizamo was told the film “couldn’t have two Latin people in the movie because then it becomes a Latin movie.”

John Leguizamo also discussed the downside to being vocal, telling Barili that he lost approximately half of his followers on various social media networks for being political. The actor has been criticized for his views, with some people calling him racial slurs and telling him he’s no longer entertaining. Fortunately, Leguizamo is able to brush off the hate, and he feels that he’s achieved enough success that he feels it’s a duty of his to give back.

Last month, John Leguizamo received quite a bit of backlash after he blasted the all-white cast of the upcoming Super Mario Bros. remake. Chris Pratt is set to voice Mario in the animated feature with Charlie Day voicing his brother Luigi. Leguizamo portrayed Luigi in the 1993 live-action adaptation of Nintendo’s hit video game franchise, and he’s praised the groundbreaking color-blind casting of the movie.

Prior to criticizing the lack of Latinx leads in the new Super Mario Bros. film, John Leguizamo harshly responded to James Franco being cast as Fidel Castro in the movie Alina of Cuba. He took to Instagram to demand to know why Hollywood continues to exclude his people while stealing their narratives. He also insisted that he didn’t have a problem with James Franco but pointed out that he wasn’t Latino.