Vivica Fox Supports Petition for Marvel’s “Black Panther” to Give Back to Black Community
by G. Brown
Marvel’s “Black Panther” is still three days from a nationwide theatrical release and the movie is gaining more steam towards a big payday. Fortune Magazine says the movie “is forecasted to pull in as much as $165 million in domestic box-office gross for its debut over the four-day President’s Day holiday weekend. Such a showing would hand Black Panther the largest domestic opening ever for a February release…”
Before the first ticket is in moviegoers hands, the hands are out for some of that money. Someone by the name of Chaz Gormley has decided that The Walt Disney Company which owns Marvel Studios should give 25% of what the movie earns back to Black communities. The Change.org petition declares, “Through a clever, well manufactured marketing campaign Marvel Studios and their parent company The Walt Disney Company have targeted the black community with their advertisements for the upcoming Black Panther film,”. The petitioner continues saying, “While many would see the release of a major studio film with a majority black cast, black director and art direction helmed by black artists (the SZA & Kendrick Lamar song “All The Stars”will be part of the Black Panther soundtrack) as a win – what exactly will the black community gain, aside from another symbolic victory?”
The petitioner presents enough of a convincing argument that more than five thousand people have signed on. Actress Vivica A. Fox is on board. The “Independence Day” actress told TMZ “I think that’s an excellent idea…Why not? The community will be so supportive of them. When you give back, blessings continue to come.”
It does sound good doesn’t it?–At first, but then you start to wonder, ‘why should one movie out of hundreds every year be coerced to give back?’ Is anyone expecting the following Marvel movie “Infinity War” to give back to Black, White, green(Hulk), technological (Stark), scientific (Banner) or alien (Groot and pretty much all the Guardians) communities? Silly notion when you look at it that way.
The argument that the movie has an all Black cast isn’t reason to petition or demand that the studios give back. Based on that logic, should we only petition a cut be given back when the cast is primarily Black, majority Black, half-Black, 10 Blacks or even one Black actor?
Not long ago, there was some subversive White supremacist group on Facebook trying to drum up support to boycott the movie as a way to get back at Disney for whatever their gripe is with Disney. Then they tried to torpedo the movie’s Rotten Tomatoes score by encouraging people to give negative reviews of the movie. This whole give back to Black communities because you’re making so much money sounds like another shady deal. If we demand that industries give back to Black communities because they’re targeted in marketing campaigns, then we should also go after soda companies, tobacco companies, McDonald’s and fast food companies, junk food companies, alcohol companies and let’s just stop there because we can’t list them all.
A 2013 review by the Institute of Medicine concluded that “Youth of color get what researchers have termed a “double dose” of unhealthy food and sugary beverage marketing because they are exposed to targeted as well as mainstream campaigns, particularly via digital media, which research shows is consumed by youth of color more frequently than white youth.” Where are the petitions against junk food and sugar companies? One commenter on a Twitter convo about the petition agrees saying…
why this movie.. why not the BILLION DOLLAR HAIR WEAVE INDUSTRY … damn nobody buys more FAKE HAIR than black women.. those profits don’t go back to the black community .. why don’t https://t.co/u9f9w2L56R ask those hair distributors to donate something S.T.E.M. #CRICKETS pic.twitter.com/kV7Qop0NsO
— Axel Truther (@AxelTruther) February 11, 2018
Singling out one movie because it stands to make millions is ridiculous unless you also plan to go after the “Star Wars”, “Mission Impossible”, “Tomb Raider” and “Ocean’s 11” franchise installments and demand they give back a portion of the millions they’ll make. But petitioning a movie because the cast is primarily Black, well, that sounds…you know what it sounds like. It definitely doesn’t sound altruistic, but instead sounds like another petition which is only offering a “symbolic victory“.
This isn’t paying it forward or Black power. It’s just petty panhandling.