No doubt many of you are going to see Tower Heist this weekend; but as you watch it, there’s something I think that you should keep in mind. No, not that the film totally defies logic and the rules of gravity (You’ll know what I mean when you see it); But the fact that the project was originally conceived as a black film.
The premise for the film was thought up by Eddie Murphy a few years ago, who brought the project to producer Brian Glazer and Imagine Entertainment, with the intent being to do a “black Ocean’s Eleven,” and they started throwing around ideas about who to co-star with Murphy – people such as Chris Rock, Jamie Foxx, Dave Chappelle and Chris Tucker.
However the idea of having a cast of black comedians was quickly dropped during development. According to a recent article in the Chicago Tribune, “The filmmakers say it wasn’t Murphy’s recent flops that prompted the change, but rather a desire for authenticity. A modern apartment building would have a racially diverse staff”. So instead of a film with every popular black comedian in it. The film now has just Murphy, Gabourey Sidibe and character- and Tony-nominated stage actor Stephen Henderson, as the only black people in the film.
Not exactly a fair trade.
Gee ya think the real reason was because Universal and Imagine Entertainment didn’t want to spend $85 million on a film with a mainly black cast? What do you think?