Following the release of the new film’s first full-length trailer, Ghostbusters co-star Leslie Jones has responded to critics, who called her character a racial stereotype.
As explained in last week’s trailer for the film, Jones plays Patty Tolan, a New York subway worker whose prescribed value is her knowledge of the city. By contrast, the other three (white) Ghostbusters — played by Melissa McCarthy, Kristen Wiig and Kate McKinnon — are professors and scientists.
Jones dismissed the notion that her character’s profession was menial compared to the others in a series of tweets Friday.
“Why can’t a regular person be a ghostbuster,” Jones said.
Some fans of the franchise have pointed out that the characters in the reboot, including Tolan, mirror the lineup of the original 1984 film. However, stubborn critics don’t accept that as an excuse for promoting what could be seen as a stereotype. In a second string of tweets on Sunday, Jones suggested that some of the critics’ complaints were built on unfairly conflating one’s profession with their intelligence and social worth.
The upcoming remake of the 1984 comedy, which features four female co-stars instead of four men has been the subject of online critique since the core casting was announced in January of last year, mostly from “purist” — otherwise known as sexist — fans who argued that an all-female cast would detract from the new film’s nostalgic quality.
The new Ghostbusters will be in theaters July 15, 2016.