Actor Regé-Jean Page Addresses Rumors He’ll Be In ‘Black Panther’ Sequel + Calls For More Black Representation In Media: We’re Used To Empathizing With The World Through White People’s Eyes
Regé-Jean Page is opening up about his mega-popular role in Bridgerton, and speculation that he’s taking on a role in the upcoming Black Panther sequel.
The breakout star of Netflix’s Bridgerton, played Simon Basset, the Duke of Hastings. The record-breaking series aired in 82 million households around the world when it debuted.
Media pandemonium occurred when it was announced that the 31-year-old British-Zimbabwean wouldn’t be returning to the show. After the announcement of his departure from the well-loved show, Regé-Jean Page took to Instagram with a message:
“The ride of a lifetime. It’s been an absolute pleasure and a privilege to be your Duke. Joining the family-not just on screen, but off screen too. Our incredibly creative and generous cast, crew, outstanding fans-it’s been beyond anything I could have imagined. The love is real and will just keep growing.”
In a candid interview with Variety, Regé-Jean Page opened up about his role on the hit show and what life is like for him beyond Bridgerton. The esteemed actor discussed what it was like being a Black man playing the role of Duke Simon Hastings. He further discussed the need for more black representation in media. Regé-Jean Page said:
“Me and my friend used to joke about the fact that you don’t see a black man on a horse…It’s so simple. I can get on a horse and I can put it on the screen; that’s step one. I can be royalty, and [other people of color] can see the possibility of being royalty. Standing there, wearing the boots and the jacket, doing the dances, inhabiting a space that is perfectly possible for me to inhabit, changes how you see the world.”
“As Black people, we’re very used to empathizing with the world through white people’s eyes, because they are the protagonists. I know what it’s like to look at the world and empathize with Superman because I spend my whole life doing that. What’s revolutionary, in its own way, is getting folks to see the world through my eyes, because then they are in my skin and looking at the world through me.”
It was speculated that Regé-Jean Page was turned down for the role of Superman’s grandfather Seg-El, on Syfy’s DC superhero series Krypton because he’s black. He posted a vague tweet addressing the rumors in April.
When asked about the role and his tweet, Regé-Jean Page said this:
“I think I said what I had to say within the tweet. I decided a very long time ago that I would refuse to be defined by trauma and would only be defined by success, when and where it comes.”
He went on to say:
“I will not waste my what breath I have feeding things that are not worth it. So I choose my words carefully. I spend my energy carefully, and I’ll continue to do that where it is necessary and welcomed.”
Page also opened up about his mentor/mentee relationship with This Is Us actor Sterling Brown.
When they met, Page said, “My brain just turned off.” With reverence for his mentor, he recalled telling Sterling Brown,
“I just want to be you.”
In that conversation, Sterling Brown reassured the young actor, “
You’ve got stuff ahead of you. You can breath.”
In the conversation, Regé-Jean addressed speculations that he will be starring as the next James Bond, and in the Black Panther sequel.
“I spend a lot of time at the moment talking about what other people are saying about me, as opposed to anything I’m actually doing. I can’t talk about the B [Bond] word, because I’ve got nothing to say on it. I can’t talk about which jobs I’m not doing, because I’m not doing them. [But] I’m very happy with the work I am doing. I’ve been a huge fan of the types of movies that the MCU has been putting out, that have made it possible to do the kind of work I’m doing now, both directly and indirectly — with the Russos and with the genre that I’m working in with John and Jonathan [who wrote ‘Spider Man: Homecoming’].
With screen credits dating back to 2004, Page has had and continues to have an amazing on-screen journey. Since Bridgerton, he’s been cast in projects Dungeons & Dragons and The Gray Man. Regardless of what role he plays, he’s sure to dominate and fans are looking forward to seeing what more he’ll bring to the big screen.
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