Gal Gadot Defends Cleopatra Role After White Washing Accusations
Gal Gadot Defends Cleopatra Role After White Washing Accusations
Gal Gadot Defends Cleopatra Role After White Washing Accusations
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Gal Gadot Defends Cleopatra Role After White Washing Accusations

Gal Gadot who has recently been cast as Cleopatra has hit back at accusations that she is whitewashing the Egyptian Queen.

Israeli star Gal Gadot caused a wave of controversy back in October after the actress was cast as Cleopatra in an upcoming movie about the iconic Egyptian Queen as many believed she was whitewashing the role.

Now, theWonder Womanactress has hit back at the claims stating ‘I want to honour this amazing historic icon that I admire so much’.

Gadot attempted to clear the air on the issue while speaking to BBC Arabic's Sam Asi stating that Cleopatra was not Egyptian:

First of all, if you want to be true to the facts then Cleopatra was Macedonian.

The Hollywood starlet then went on to express her passion for the powerful female and defended herself by claiming there were no Macedonian actresses suitable for the role:

We were looking for a Macedonian actress that could fit Cleopatra. She wasn’t there, and I was very passionate about Cleopatra.

Gal then continued to shut down criticism by stating that ‘people are people’ and all she wanted to do was honour the role:

I have friends from across the globe, whether they’re Muslims or Christian or Catholic or atheist or Buddhist, or Jewish of course... People are people, and with me I want to celebrate the legacy of Cleopatra and honour this amazing historic icon that I admire so much.

However, the uproar in October highlighted that many reports found that Cleopatra was actually of Greek descent. While some, stated in a 2009 documentary, claim that the Queen was probably of mixed ancestry.

In fact, Cleopatra’s ancestry has been subject to passionate debate over the years and experts just can’t seem to come to a single conclusion.

Kathryn Bard, Professor of Archaeology and Classical Studies at Boston University, came to Gadot’s defence earlier this year by stating that Cleopatra was indeed white:

Cleopatra VII was white – of Macedonian descent, as were all of the Ptolemy rulers, who lived in Egypt.

Despite Bard’s argument, the reason nobody can be sure about Cleopatra’s ancestry because the identity of her mother is still unknown.

The 2009 documentary that involved a team of archaeologists working under Hilke Thuer of the Austrian Academy of Sciences, believed to have found Cleopatra’s sister, Princess Arsinoe, in Turkey. This lead them to believe that the Egyptian icon’s mother was actually African. Arisnoe stated at the time:

That Arsinoe had an African mother is a real sensation which leads to a new insight on Cleopatra's family and the relationship of the sisters Cleopatra and Arsinoe.

However, many others such as Alexander Badawy Professor of Egyptian Art and Archaeology at John Hopkins University, believe that Cleopatra’s mother could have been Egyptian and was from a family of the priests of Memphis.

Despite the debate, this is not the first time that the iconic role would be filled by a white presenting woman as Elizabeth Taylor also played the role back in 1963.

Over the years Cleopatra has also been played by actresses from all over the world from Canada, to Chile to Turkey including Italian actresses Sophia Lauren and Monica Bellucci.

By Johanna Garner

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