Thandie Newton: 'British period dramas limit roles for black actors'

Remigio Civitarese
Marzo 20, 2017

Thandie, 44, recently returned home to appear in the upcoming fourth season of BBC crime drama Line of Duty, and while she enjoys working on British-based projects, she insists there isn't much variety in the job offers she typically receives in the United Kingdom.

"I love being here, but I can't work, because I can't do Downton Abbey, can't be in Victoria, can't be in Call The Midwife", the Bafta-winning actress told the Sunday Times Magazine. I'm not interested in that, don't want to do it. During New York Comic Con in 2016, while promoting Westworld, she said, "I nearly got to the point where I kind of wanted to retire.and do something else but it's hard to find something else like this that's going to give you money for the rent and for the school fees".

"I'm not interested in that, don't want to do it - there just seems to be a desire for stuff about the Royal Family, stuff from the past, which is understandable, but it just makes it slim pickings for people of colour".

"I didn't know anything about the role but I said I wanted to do it", she said. "But I'm glad of it, in a way, that I survived and overcame".

Newton, whose next United Kingdom television appearance will be in the BBC's Line Of Duty, is by no means the only British star to comment on the continued lack of diversity in the United Kingdom film and TV industry.

In 2015, David Oyelowo discussed how a shortfall of opportunities available to black people in British drama had led to many going to the USA for work instead.

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