John Boyega Calls Out Game Of Thrones' Diversity Problem: 'There Are No Black People'

The Star Wars actor has slammed the show's producers for casting predominantly white actors

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The return of the long-awaited Game of Thrones series on Sunday night had fans going bananas over that Arya Stark moment, the new Jack Sparrow-inspired character Aeron Greyjoy who sported a dashing leather-look ensemble, and numerous feminist fist-pump moments from the likes of Sansa Stark and Lyanna Mormont.

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However, the hit HBO show hasn't gone down well with Star Wars: The Force Awakens actor John Boyega, who is calling out the show for its lack of diversity in its casting.

In an interview with GQ, the London-born star says: 'There are no black people on Game of Thrones. You don't see one black person in Lord of the Rings. I ain't paying money to always see one type of person on-screen.'

Boyega – who suffered endless abuse when he was cast as a stormtrooper in the Star Wars franchise and received racist tweets using the hashtag #BoycottStarWarsVII claiming the film promoted 'white genocide' – added: 'You see different people from different backgrounds, different cultures, every day.

'Even if you're a racist, you have to live with that. We can ruffle up some feathers,' he added.

While the majority of the show's cast members are white, it must be noted that black actors Lucian Msmati, DeObia Oparei, Nathalie Emmanuel and Jacob Anderson (otherwise known as Raleigh Ritchey) have featured.

However, it's fair to say they have failed to receive as significant airtime and storyline emphasis as their white co-stars, such as Kit Harrington, Maisie Williams and Sophie Turner.

There are no black people on Game of Thrones. You don't see one black person in Lord of the Rings.

Earlier this month, the show's casting director Nina Gold brushed off suggestions of a diversity problem in the programme to Vanity Fair.

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She said: 'Even though these are fantasy worlds, there are tribes, families, and dynasties. Once you've put one mark on the catalyst for the Targaryens or the Starks, you really owe it to the, oh I can't think of the word, but the authenticity of trying to make them a family somehow.

'In the books, the Targaryens are these white, white people with silver hair and violet eyes. The Starks are kind of rough, like Northern English people. The Lannisters are golden, aren't they? We really believed we were doing it like the books, basically...I guess I don't know what to really say about it, because it's not like there's no diversity in the casting in Game of Thrones.

'We've turned Grey Worm and Missandei into really deep characters...I really do believe in diversity in casting, and always have done. I don't feel I have to defend it, really,' she added.

GOT writer George RR Martin also revealed it's unlikely readers will be seeing any diverse characters taking lead roles in the forthcoming books.

'Westeros around 300 AC is nowhere near as diverse as 21st century America, of course…' George RR Martin revealed in a blog post.

'But with that being said, I do have some 'characters of colour' who will have somewhat larger roles in Winds of Winter. Admittedly, these are secondary and tertiary characters, though not without importance,' he added.

Look, if fans can get over the fact there are humanoid ice creatures roaming beyond the wall, Dothraki can be a bonafide language, and higher mysteries exist, I'm sure they can accept the fact there's a non-white character in a leading role.

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