Former Stumptown Actor Blasts 'Degrading' Recasting

Actor Mark Webber was previously tapped to play the male lead in ABC's upcoming television adaptation of the Oni Press comic book series Stumptown. However, the part will now be recast, with sources claiming that the producers wish to go in a different direction with the role. According to Webber himself, his dismissal came about because he was deemed as being "not handsome enough."

Webber, who is perhaps best known for his role in the 2010 film Scott Pilgrim vs. the World -- another Oni Press adaptation -- took to Twitter to air his grievances with the situation itself, as well as its larger implications.

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"Look, I'm a straight white male so I know my journey has been way less painful in this warped industry, but I'm being recast in a network television show because I'm not handsome enough for the executives," Webber wrote. "It's important for me to share the real pain we endure in this industry."

"I'm so curious how they're going to frame this in their upfront announcement," he continued. "What the spin will be? Probably none as I've already been deemed insignificant by them. The way I was treated was so degrading. These 'executive' decisions are why network TV is dying."

Following Webber's initial statement, he was met by an outpouring of support from fans and fellow actors, namely John Ross Bowie, Josh Charles and Webber's wife Teresa Palmer. Much of this support was retweeted by Webber.

Still, Webber continued to recount the whole experience, tweeting, "The wonderful woman doing makeup, who like me had come up in the film world, had never dealt with a 'network' before. She was so strong with me in the trailer as the executive determined my look on the show."

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"The way this industry has contributed to women hating their bodies is just one of the many things I've abhorred for so long," he said. "I know a lot of us men generally stay silent with our challenges in this arena." Webber also explained that he had seen similar unfortunate trends popping up in the world of independent films.

Webber went on to tweet, "Contrived 'diverse' female empowerment shows by stale white men, created for the sole purpose of making them money and giving them power. Contributes nothing to the cultural development of the world." However, that tweet has since been deleted, with the actor clarifying that it was just a general thought, and had nothing to do with the series he was fired from.

Nevertheless, Webber was sure to make his final thoughts on the matter crystal clear, while also wishing the best to those who will continue to work on the series.

"I was raised by a single teenage mom," he wrote. "We were poor. We were homeless. We lived in the streets. She became a radical revolutionary leader. I give zero f-cks what filthy rich executives at huge corporations think about me. Never have. Never will."

"I feel sad that by expressing my own bad experience with the show I was fired from, that it could interfere with the positive experience the actors and creatives that are still on the show should be having," he continued. "I wish the writers, producers and cast nothing but love."

As of now, ABC has yet to issue a statement on this matter.

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Stumptown is executive produced by Richman, along with Ruben Fleischer and David Bernad. Rucka, Southworth and Justin Greenwood will also be involved in the production of the series. The series stars Cobie Smulders, who will be joined by Tantoo Cardinal, Cole Sibus, Adrian Martinez, Camryn Manheim and Michael Ealy.

(via The Hollywood Reporter)

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