Meryl Streep Denies Defending All-White Film Festival Jury With ‘We’re All Africans’ Comment
Meryl Streep denied on Thursday that she ever defended the decision to have an all-white jury at the 2016 Berlin International Film Festival. The actress explained that when she said “we’re all Africans” at a press conference, it was in regard to a different topic altogether.
As Gossip Cop reported, the festival’s seven-member jury, which Streep is heading, doesn’t include any racial minorities. It was reported that the actress justified the lack of diversity when she said, “We’re all from Africa originally, you know? We’re all Berliners, we’re all Africans, really,” but Streep has now explained that her quote had been misattributed.
“Contrary to distorted reporting, no one at that press conference addressed a question to me about the racial makeup of the jury,” Streep wrote in a piece for The Huffington Post. “I did not ‘defend’ the ‘all-white jury,’ nor would I, if I had been asked to do so.” The actress explained that her “we’re all Africans” remark was made during “a longwinded answer to a different question… concerning my familiarity with Arab films.” Streep noted that she was simply trying to articulate how there’s “a core of humanity that travels right through every culture.”
The actress then went on to express her disappointment with how the misunderstanding took the spotlight away from the filmmakers being honored at the festival. She said she only wished the media had covered the artists “with as much energetic attention as that directed at my misconstrued remarks.”