Here's How Djimon Hounsou Reacted When His Son Said, 'I Want to Be Light-Skinned'

This is heartbreaking.

Djimon Hounsou, while making the promo rounds for his new film The Legend of Tarzan, made a heartbreaking revelation about his son, speaking on the importance of diversity in casting.

According to The Grio, the actor, who plays Chief Mbonga in the film, which is almost entirely set in Africa, explained that his son told him he wanted to be light-skinned so he can be a superhero. Speaking on the current resurgence of Black major superheroes like Luke Cage and the Black Panther to the forefront of current media, he said our Black kids need to see this.

"It's about time! It's absolutely great news to have a hero that Black folks can identify with," he said, "Could you imagine my misfortune when my son told me, 'I want to be light-skinned so I can climb the walls like Spider-Man' — just because he has seen Spider-Man and Batman and all these superheroes who were all white? The minute he said it, I was like, 'Damn.' My whole self was shattered."

Though he said he didn't know how to respond at first, he appreciates the representation Black superheroes are getting today to change that narrative.

"I was like, 'Wow, what sort of comeback do you have for this? It's important to recognize yourself," he said. "It's absolutely important. That's the value in telling stories. That's a reason why we create fantasy stories, so we can surpass this life condition."

Watch the actor speak on his success in the BET video, above. is your No. 1 source for Black celebrity news, photos, exclusive videos and all the latest in the world of hip hop and R&B music. 

Latest News

Subscribe for BET Updates

Provide your email address to receive our newsletter.

Select the types of notification you would like to receive from us. Please note, you must choose at least one.

By clicking subscribe, I consent to receiving newsletters and other marketing emails. Newsletters are subject to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. Users can unsubscribe at any time.