Would ‘White Boy Rick’ Have Been Made If He Was Black?

attends the New York special screening of "White Boy Rick" hosted by Columbia Pictures and Studio 8 at the Paris Theater on September 12, 2018 in New York City.

Would ‘White Boy Rick’ Have Been Made If He Was Black?

The cast of the Detroit drug dealer flick weighs in.

Published September 21, 2018

White Boy Rick, a film about a single father struggling to raise two teenagers during the peak of the 1980s Detroit crack epidemic, is currently the chatter on everyone's lips.

With the title character finding himself in legal trouble, forcing his son to work with the FBI to keep him out of prison, things intensify, quickly. Given these trials, though, would the same eventual outcome be seen if "Rick" was Black? The film's cast and director weigh in.

"I think it would be a different story that was being told," Jonathan Majors, who plays Lil' Man, said. "They're both true stories. Where I grew up, I knew young brothers who got thrown in jail. I got buddies who've been thrown in jail. I know white boys who've also been thrown in jail. But what it does, if it were to be a Black boy, it would have the same impact, it would just be packaged a little differently."

Yann Demange, the director of the movie, which stars the likes of Matthew McConaughey, Brian Tyree Henry and even YG, also weighed in and shared some honest insight on how the narrative would change if this was the case.

"The African-American version would not be my story to tell, but he [Majors] has one of the most poignant lines from the film. He says, 'If we get caught, we do Black time. If you get caught, you do white time," Demange added. "As being a white kid, he still got extended a certain amount of privilege. So, can you imagine, if he was Black, how it would have gone down?"

See what the rest of the cast felt about this hypothetical alteration in the video, above.

White Boy Rick is currently playing in theaters.

Written by Moriba Cummings

(Photo by Jim Spellman/Getty Images)


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