"Guardians of the Galaxy" director James Gunn has opened up about the reported casting of Zendaya as Mary Jane in "Spider-Man: Homecoming." In particular, Gunn addressed the criticism from some fans who expected the character to be played by a white actress.
"For me, if a character's primary attribute - the thing that makes them iconic - is the color of their skin, or their hair color, frankly, that character is shallow and sucks," Gunn wrote in a post to Facebook. "For me, what makes MJ MJ is her alpha female playfulness, and if the actress captures that, then she'll work. And, for the record, I think Zendaya even matches what I think of as MJ's primary physical characteristics - she's a tall, thin model - much more so than actresses have in the past."
Though Gunn spoke on the Zendaya report, he didn't confirm she'll be playing Mary Jane. He wrote in the post, "For those of you who think this means I'm confirming that Zendaya IS playing MJ, realize that although I've read the Spidey script, and I've met the actress in question, I have no idea what her role is. There's a good chance someone told me at one time or another, but, if so, I can't remember. I'm going to find out when I go into Marvel this afternoon, but I feel free to speak until that time because it's about the concept about a black woman playing Mary Jane, not the actuality or hypothesis of it."
Additionally, the helmer responded to a fan who asked if the part of Star-Lord (Chris Pratt) could've gone to a diverse actor, "Yes, both Latino and black actors were considered for the role of Peter Quill."
Take a look at Gunn's full post on the possible Mary Jane casting below: