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Guy Branum Calls Out The Whale's Problematic Source Material & Casting

Guy Branum Calls Out The Whale's Problematic Source Material & Casting

Guy Branum, Brendan Fraser
Courtesy of PRIDE; A24

“As an actual fat gay person, I feel like my life doesn’t need to be a metaphor for somebody else’s pain,” the Bros actor acknowledged.

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Guy Branum took a moment during the grand premiere of Bros to share his thoughts on the casting choices and source material of the 2022 film The Whale.

Brendan Fraser stars as the protagonist, Charlie, in the film – and many critics are calling this the actor’s big comeback to Hollywood. However, many have also criticized the choice of casting Fraser to play a fat gay character on the big screen. The latest celebrity to chime in about the casting and source material of The Whale is Branum, who is currently promoting his role in the gay rom-com Bros.

“I think that the source material of The Whale is problematic. I think that it’s trying to use extreme fatness as a metaphor for gay pain,” Branum told Stacey Yvonne during an exclusive interview with PRIDE. “And as an actual fat gay person, I feel like my life doesn’t need to be a metaphor for somebody else’s pain.”

The actor continued, “I also have real problems with the fact that they cast a straight actor who is not very fat, and [who] used prosthetics to represent fatness, in the film. I think it allows people to talk about that character as an object in a way that wouldn’t be possible if it were an actual fat person who you had to look in the eyes.”

Nonetheless, Branum acknowledged that he is happy about Fraser’s long-awaited return as a leading movie star in Hollywood. “We all want Brendan Fraser to have a great comeback. We all want this moment for him,” Branum remarked. “But we also need to think about how much we are representing queer life and fat life through straight actors or prosthetics.”

Directed by Darren Aronofsky, The Whale was adapted from a 2012 play of the same name by Samuel D. Hunter. Despite the fact that there are many working actors in Hollywood who identify as both fat and gay, production chose to cast Fraser in the main role.

Branum is certainly not alone in his criticism of The Whale, and hearing his input is extremely important to critics who have voiced similar concerns in the past few months.

Bros is now in theaters. The Whale opens December 9, 2022 in theaters.

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Bernardo Sim

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Bernardo Sim is experiencing the queer pop culture multiverse. Born in Brazil, he currently lives in South Florida.

Bernardo Sim is experiencing the queer pop culture multiverse. Born in Brazil, he currently lives in South Florida.