Actress Elizabeth Banks criticized director Steven Spielberg for not having a female lead in his films and Black women were not here for it, swiftly pointing out “The Color Purple” as an example.
“I went to [see] ‘Indiana Jones’ and ‘Jaws’ and every movie Steven Spielberg ever made, and by the way, he’s never made a movie with a female lead,” TheWrap reported Banks as saying while accepting an award from the non-profit group Women in Film Wednesday, June 14.
“Sorry, Steven. I don’t mean to call your ass out, but it’s true.”
When an audience member pointed out 1985’s “The Color Purple,” which starred Whoopi Goldberg and Oprah Winfrey, Banks moved on from the topic.
Many Twitter users took issue with Banks.
All she had to do was acknowledge she was wrong after they brought up The Color Purple pic.twitter.com/QSJsYM5313
— Bit Bit (@searchforbetter) June 15, 2017
Please don't do white feminism like this😑👇🏾👇🏾👇🏾
'The Color Purple' is a womanism classic. Female lead. Just not a white one. Use Google. https://t.co/25vkgQfgoX
— Bravenak (@bravenak) June 15, 2017
My timeline today
Elizabeth Bank: Spielberg never made a movie with a woman
Black Twitter: ….The Color Purple pic.twitter.com/Mw6g9yZl44
— Trickster Goddess 🕷 (@XaremiCharm) June 15, 2017
I AM, actually. This woman calls herself an actress. She's been working in Hollywood for nearly 20 years yet isn't aware of The Color Purple
— Quinoa & Cornrows® (@SigmaR3LLA) June 15, 2017
ELIZABETH BANKS: Steven Spielberg never made a movie with a female lead
AUDIENCE MEMBER: He made "The Color Purple"
ELIZABETH BANKS: pic.twitter.com/gHTjKZS2C4
— Eric Haywood (@EricHaywood) June 15, 2017
In response to Banks’ statement, IndieWire Editor-at-Large Anne Thompson tweeted the Oscar-nominated film flopped before a responder questioned her.
The correction didn’t stop people from slamming Thompson.
What an idiotic thing to say. Just because YOU didn't watch it, it doesn't mean it wasn't a monumental, instrumental, inspiring movie.
— Stephanie Yeboah (@NerdAboutTown) June 15, 2017
Do you have any idea what The Color Purple, a movie about Southern poor Black women finding their voices, means culturally for Black women? pic.twitter.com/MWxJ1wFdxh
— Evette Dionne 🤔 (@freeblackgirl) June 15, 2017
how white do you have to be to consider The Color Purple a flop?
— king crissle (@crissles) June 15, 2017
Someone called The Color Purple a flop? In 2017? In this economy? pic.twitter.com/FlnHzi8i8A
— lauren warren™️ (@iamlaurenp) June 15, 2017
I'm curious to know how she defines a "flop" bc The Color Purple was nominated for 11 Oscars, won a Golden Globe, & grossed $142 million.
— Amara La Negra (@ShaylaRacquel) June 15, 2017
To whomever called The Color Purple a flop.
Until you take that sh*t back everything you think about gonna fail pic.twitter.com/LcIeokZZk4
— DKT (@darleneturner53) June 15, 2017