Hollywood’s ace team of David Franzoni and Stephen Joel Brown are planning to make a movie on Persian Poet and philosopher Rumi. David Franzoni who had earlier written scripts like Gladiator and King Arthur wants to cast Leonardo Di Caprio as Rumi, and Robert Downey Jr. as his spiritual adviser Shams Tabrizi.
The cast right now is purely speculative, but the films shooting is being planned for next year. If the awesomeness of Leonardo being cast as Rumi is not enough, adding Robert Downey Jr to the mix, just took the proposal to a Buzzin level max.
The Social Media space however has not been so kind to the concept, and The hashtag #RumiWasntWhite has been trending ever since the news broke.
The criticism for Hollywood’s growing tradition of casting White Caucasian men for Asian and Arab roles, in some ways is valid, and in some ways a little bit misplaced.
A White leading actor playing an Asian or Arab role, takes the film to a far larger audience. And if spreading ones cultural awareness is of any merit, that is as good as it gets.
Irrespective of which way the debate settles, Leonardo playing Rumi is one Blockbuster performance we are waiting for.