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Thread: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

  1. #1
    Roma_Victrix's Avatar Call me Ishmael
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    Default Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    Contrary to what I thought before, Denis Villeneuve will not be directing a Cleopatra epic for Sony Pictures! The project will instead go to Paramount Pictures with Patty Jenkins as the director, the same one who's directed both the Wonder Woman films with Gal Gadot. The latter will play the part of Cleopatra VII Philopator, a Macedonian Greek monarch of the Ptolemaic dynasty who ruled Hellenistic Egypt and had an affair with Roman dictator Julius Caesar before marrying Mark Antony and leading a war against Octavian, later emperor Augustus of the Roman Empire.

    Indie Wire breaks it down in this article here.

    Gal Gadot has come under heavy criticism for landing the role, most of it on Twitter and much of it seemingly based on identity politics, as well as accusations of Zionism for her mandatory service in the Israeli military. I'm a big democratic socialist progressive lefty and not a fan of Israeli occupation of Palestine or human rights abuses against Palestinians, but I'm not going to blame Gadot for that personally. As far as I know she's a feminist who doesn't harbor a bunch of odious right-wing views. The anti-Semitic comments aimed at her on Twitter have also been pretty ugly.

    The other aspect is the race, ethnicity and skin tone argument, which is silly, as Gal Gadot looks sufficiently 'Mediterranean' and one could argue she's a European colonizer herself, being a modern Israeli with a Polish background! Ironically Cleopatra was perhaps even fairer featured than her with reddish auburn hair judging by Roman frescos from Pompeii and Herculaneum showing her wearing a Hellenistic Greek royal diadem and with a face matching her Ptolemaic coinage. In either case, this guy breaks that down and the other silly stuff about Cleopatra needing to be played by a black African or Arab Egyptian actress despite being colonial European in origin (with the possibility her uncertain mother *might* have been partially native Egyptian).

    Spoiler Alert, click show to read: 




    My one criticism is that I just think Gal Gadot is rather stale and wooden as an actress, certainly not savvy, quick-witted and shrewd like Cleopatra.

    Putting skin color aside, as it's a silly argument, her personality isn't exactly the best fit for Cleopatra's persona in my humble opinion. Cleopatra was allegedly incredibly sharp-witted, charming, with a dry sense of humor and capable of talking down powerful Roman men like Antony with casual insults. Gadot strikes me as a nice lady fit for the personality of Wonder Woman, but I just don't think she has it in her to accurately depict a ruthless Hellenistic monarch who had her siblings killed, because they were vicious rivals in a Ptolemaic civil war. Aside from getting Antony to execute Arsinoe IV during her exile at Ephesus for her role in besieging the royal palace at Alexandria, Cleopatra literally poisoned her own little brother-husband Ptolemy XIV to put her son Caesarion on the throne, after Ptolemy XIII had drowned in the Nile fleeing the Romans and their allied/auxiliary forces under Julius Caesar. It would be interesting to see how Gadot would handle any of this or if the movie will accurately present Cleopatra as the rather Machiavellian figure that she was, at least according to Roman historiography (which is obviously biased).

  2. #2

    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    Meh. Cleopatra has been played by everyfrakkingbody over the years. If they think they're going to typecast her into a particular skin color they have another thing coming. I reserve the right to judge Gal Gadot's casting until I see the rest of the cast formed though. If done right, Cleopatra movies are more ensemble anyway.
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  3. #3

    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    Quote Originally Posted by Roma_Victrix View Post
    Putting skin color aside, as it's a silly argument
    Why do you hate black and brown people so much?

    I think she looks less Mediterranean than the typical Ashkenazi woman in a way that makes her less fitting for the role (too tall and lanky, nose smaller than her appetite), but more so than that, it's hard for me to imagine someone with such a bubbly friendly personality playing Cleopatra. Thankfully, I've barely witnessed her acting, so I can't say I know whether or not she can manage to play someone besides herself.
    Quote Originally Posted by Enros View Post
    You don't seem to be familiar with how the burden of proof works in when discussing social justice. It's not like science where it lies on the one making the claim. If someone claims to be oppressed, they don't have to prove it.


  4. #4
    Kyriakos's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    There are a number of greek-american actresses, pick one of those
    Anyway, I don't mind - I really doubt I'll ever watch this film in the first place. Not like there's a need to replace the Elizabeth Taylor version.
    Λέων μεν ὄνυξι κρατεῖ, κέρασι δε βούς, ἄνθρωπος δε νῷι
    "While the lion prevails with its claws, and the ox through its horns, man does by his thinking"
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  5. #5

    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    Quote Originally Posted by Kyriakos View Post
    Anyway, I don't mind
    What? You guys and Best Macedonia should be outraged.
    Quote Originally Posted by Enros View Post
    You don't seem to be familiar with how the burden of proof works in when discussing social justice. It's not like science where it lies on the one making the claim. If someone claims to be oppressed, they don't have to prove it.


  6. #6
    Kyriakos's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    Maybe people in the Former Former YROM, aka FYRONM should better avoid getting too interested in this

    Besides, it is the age of CGI, there's no way the new movie will look as good as the Taylor Cleopatra.
    Λέων μεν ὄνυξι κρατεῖ, κέρασι δε βούς, ἄνθρωπος δε νῷι
    "While the lion prevails with its claws, and the ox through its horns, man does by his thinking"
    Anaxagoras of Klazomenae, 5th century BC










  7. #7

    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    As per usual, it's a perfect opportunity for people to embarrass themselves in public with their anti-knowledge about ancient Egypt.
    IMO, Gal Gadot isn't the worst choice, though maybe the OP has a point. We'll see if she'll manage to adequately portray the ruthless and cunning side of Cleopatra. Also, can we have movies about other time periods and personalities in Egypt?

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    conon394's Avatar hoi polloi
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    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    I find the Internets ability to make angry criticism all to easy to generate annoying. You have to at least write a letter to a local paper which had a gate keeper in publishing it or annoy people at you local bar tops.

    In any case the ideal she not black or Arab criticism is truly amusing. Historical ignorance is well funny in a sad way.
    Last edited by conon394; October 17, 2020 at 08:13 PM.
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    Hyperides of Athens: We know, replied he, that Antipater is good, but we (the Demos of Athens) have no need of a master at present, even a good one.

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    Kyriakos's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    Reminds me of that infamous recent-ish british series, Britannia, where a roman officer asks someone if they "remember Cairo"
    Λέων μεν ὄνυξι κρατεῖ, κέρασι δε βούς, ἄνθρωπος δε νῷι
    "While the lion prevails with its claws, and the ox through its horns, man does by his thinking"
    Anaxagoras of Klazomenae, 5th century BC










  10. #10
    Abdülmecid I's Avatar ¡Ay Carmela!
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    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    Why are black nationalists so obsessed with Cleopatra? I would think that her two assassinated, little brothers would have been more likeable and relatable than Rome's puppet. Ptolemy XIII died as the symbol of national resistance against foreign rule, didn't he? Although the crocodile must have been indigenuous and not of Nubian origins. Anyway, when Cleopatra II and Cleopatra III dominated Egyptian politics, Cleopatra VII didn't exist even as a concept. Black nationalism seems a bit too much attached to Orientalist, West-inspired and chauvinistic prejudices...

  11. #11

    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    Disgraceful casting and symbol of cultural whitewashing, Cleopatra should only be played by her mummified corpse and nobody else to avoid affront to the Macedonian population of Ptolemaic Egypt

  12. #12
    conon394's Avatar hoi polloi
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    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    Could not even finish much of the intro of episode one was not up that much cheese - really Cairo?

    -------------------

    Why are black nationalists so obsessed with Cleopatra?
    Mostly because she is a recognizable name from 'Africa' and Ancient history. I lost a set of Encyclopedia Britannica from the 1950s in a basement flood. But the cool thing was was the entries were were still written by experts not sort of dry wiki stuff. Up shot is the one on J. Caesar the historian started out by noting why is this article so long because outside of Alexander He was one the few people of the classical world the average person might actually know about (I assume he meant a British working class bloke from the 50s). At least in being able to answer a multiple choice question. Realistically Cleopatra falls into that range. Yes she was a queen of Egypt. That she was the queen of of inbreed Macedonian colonial dynasty ruling a conquest state kind of eludes people. Egypt so Arab right, or Africa so black right???
    Last edited by conon394; October 17, 2020 at 08:28 PM.
    IN PATROCINIVM SVB Dromikaites

    'One day when I fly with my hands - up down the sky, like a bird'

    But if the cause be not good, the king himself hath a heavy reckoning to make, when all those legs and arms and heads, chopped off in battle, shall join together at the latter day and cry all 'We died at such a place; some swearing, some crying for surgeon, some upon their wives left poor behind them, some upon the debts they owe, some upon their children rawly left.

    Hyperides of Athens: We know, replied he, that Antipater is good, but we (the Demos of Athens) have no need of a master at present, even a good one.

  13. #13
    Sir Adrian's Avatar the Imperishable
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    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    How dare they not cast Rami Malik as Cleopatra. OUTRAGE!!!!!


    In all seriousness I think gal is a bit too "stiff" for Cleopatra, who was known to change personalities and demeanor on the fly as the situation required and be the mother of seduction around her victim...err...I mean true loves.
    Under the patronage of Pie the Inkster Click here to find a hidden gem on the forum!


  14. #14

    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    Quote Originally Posted by Settra View Post
    How dare they not cast Rami Malik as Cleopatra. OUTRAGE!!!!!
    I think most of the people who are outraged don't even know Malek is Egyptian, in fact they probably wouldn't recognize any actual Egyptian if they saw one.

  15. #15

    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    My one criticism is that I just think Gal Gadot is rather stale and wooden as an actress, certainly not savvy, quick-witted and shrewd like Cleopatra.
    Yes and Patty Jenkins isn't as good as director as some claim to be.


    Honestly i did enjoy Lyndsey Marshal portrayal in HBO Rome. But this days she would be considered heretic by identity politics types. And grounds to be canceled.

    I think most of the people who are outraged don't even know Malek is Egyptian, in fact they probably wouldn't recognize any actual Egyptian if they saw one.
    twitter and social media dynamic, are akin to sheep mentality.

    Not really different then this dynamic...

    Last edited by Knight of Heaven; October 22, 2020 at 07:25 AM.

  16. #16
    Sir Adrian's Avatar the Imperishable
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    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    Yeah, she would have been much better, or at least Melissanthi Mahut
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  17. #17
    Roma_Victrix's Avatar Call me Ishmael
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    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    Quote Originally Posted by sumskilz View Post
    Why do you hate black and brown people so much?
    Touche, but the real question here is when did you stop beating your wife, Sumskilz?
    Also, how much money exactly do you owe to the mob?
    Answers to these questions are what the American people want to hear.

    I think she looks less Mediterranean than the typical Ashkenazi woman in a way that makes her less fitting for the role (too tall and lanky, nose smaller than her appetite), but more so than that, it's hard for me to imagine someone with such a bubbly friendly personality playing Cleopatra. Thankfully, I've barely witnessed her acting, so I can't say I know whether or not she can manage to play someone besides herself.
    Yeah, Cleopatra wasn't a horrible person for the standards of rulers in antiquity, but she was at least as ruthless as any typical Hellenistic monarch, especially towards her equally vicious siblings. Then again she also showed political expediency if not genuine care for the people when she immediately tackled grain shortages and famines among the native Egyptian populace, something that her rival brother Ptolemy XIII was actively indifferent towards as he tried to undermine these efforts to hurt her popularity and sever her connection with the indigenous community ruled over by the Ptolemies. In either case Gadot is not the right type of personality for that. Aside from the lack of an aquiline nose, I also disagree slightly about Gadot lacking Mediterranean features. I think she looks like a good number of Levantine women and one could argue straddles the median line between lighter toned and darker featured Greeks.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kyriakos View Post
    There are a number of greek-american actresses, pick one of those
    Anyway, I don't mind - I really doubt I'll ever watch this film in the first place. Not like there's a need to replace the Elizabeth Taylor version.
    Jennifer Anniston step aside, you're too old for this role, it's time for Ally Ioannides!



    Quote Originally Posted by sumskilz View Post
    What? You guys and Best Macedonia should be outraged.
    Literally every comment I've seen from a Greek online has had either an apathetic/uninterested attitude or a completely accepting attitude about Gadot. So basically the one ethnic demographic that has an actual claim to Cleopatra or should have the right to even make a fuss about it (aside from Iranian-speaking Yaghnobi descendants of ancient Sogdians living today in Tajikistan) doesn't care or supports the decision.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kyriakos View Post
    Besides, it is the age of CGI, there's no way the new movie will look as good as the Taylor Cleopatra.
    Incorporating practical effects are almost always better than relying wholly on CGI. Take for instance Jurassic Park, a perfect blend. That being said, the original Cleopatra (1963) was also rather cheesy. I mean, seriously, her entrance into Rome with that giant wheeled sphinx crossing through the triumphal arch pulled by hundreds of slaves was over the top silly.

    Quote Originally Posted by athanaric View Post
    As per usual, it's a perfect opportunity for people to embarrass themselves in public with their anti-knowledge about ancient Egypt.
    IMO, Gal Gadot isn't the worst choice, though maybe the OP has a point. We'll see if she'll manage to adequately portray the ruthless and cunning side of Cleopatra. Also, can we have movies about other time periods and personalities in Egypt?
    I've always argued that Nefertiti and Akhenaten are an obvious choice aside from King Tut, who at least had a miniseries made about him with Ben Kingsley.

    Quote Originally Posted by Kyriakos View Post
    Reminds me of that infamous recent-ish british series, Britannia, where a roman officer asks someone if they "remember Cairo"
    LOL. I don't know if you're aware of this Kyriakos, but there were plenty of Muslims running around and building Islamic cities and mosques in Egypt before the birth of Muhammed! A blog told me this was the case so it must be true.

    Quote Originally Posted by Abdülmecid I View Post
    Why are black nationalists so obsessed with Cleopatra? I would think that her two assassinated, little brothers would have been more likeable and relatable than Rome's puppet. Ptolemy XIII died as the symbol of national resistance against foreign rule, didn't he? Although the crocodile must have been indigenuous and not of Nubian origins. Anyway, when Cleopatra II and Cleopatra III dominated Egyptian politics, Cleopatra VII didn't exist even as a concept. Black nationalism seems a bit too much attached to Orientalist, West-inspired and chauvinistic prejudices...
    They're obsessed with her because they think the very existence of the Ptolemaic dynasty or 300 years of Hellenistic Egypt is just European propaganda fairytales. These are not rational people. It's like arguing against a brick wall or, on the opposite end of the political spectrum, with QAnon people who think Joe Biden is a Satanic pedophile slaver.

    Also, Ptolemy XIII drowned in the Nile during his flight from the forces of Julius Caesar, while Cleopatra's only other little brother Ptolemy XIV was clearly poisoned by her. It was her sister Arsinoe IV who she had executed at Ephesus, while her older sister Berenice IV was killed years earlier during Ptolemy XII Auletes' return to Egypt from exile at the head of a Roman army (the Celtic and Germanic "Gabiniani") led by Aulus Gabinianus, the proconsular governor of Roman Syria.

    Quote Originally Posted by Gandalfus View Post
    Disgraceful casting and symbol of cultural whitewashing, Cleopatra should only be played by her mummified corpse and nobody else to avoid affront to the Macedonian population of Ptolemaic Egypt
    Now if only we could find her tomb!

    Quote Originally Posted by Settra View Post
    How dare they not cast Rami Malik as Cleopatra. OUTRAGE!!!!!


    In all seriousness I think gal is a bit too "stiff" for Cleopatra, who was known to change personalities and demeanor on the fly as the situation required and be the mother of seduction around her victim...err...I mean true loves.
    All hail the Egyptian queen of Queen, Rami Malek, of Bohemian Rhapsody fame!

    Quote Originally Posted by Knight of Heaven View Post
    Yes and Patty Jenkins isn't as good as director as some claim to be.


    Honestly i did enjoy Lyndsey Marshal portrayal in HBO Rome. But this days she would be considered heretic by identity politics types. And grounds to be canceled.
    I really did love Lindsey Marshal's Cleopatra even if some parts of it were rather silly, like the hookah smoking scene where she's just trying to get impregnated by any man she can find. LOL. That was kind of dumb even though it served the funny plot narrative of Titus Pullo being the secret father of an Egyptian royal, Caesarion, and not Julius Caesar who everyone assumed was the real father.

  18. #18

    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    I like how the Supreme Gentlemen are already offended about someone being potentially offended by this film in the future. Snowflakes destroyed with FACTS & LOGIC!
    Optio, Legio I Latina

  19. #19

    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    potentially offended by this film in the future
    No man those are already offended, and have been are trying to cancel Gal Gadot.


    That is twitter for you.


    I really did love Lindsey Marshal's Cleopatra even if some parts of it were rather silly, like the hookah smoking scene where she's just trying to get impregnated by any man she can find. LOL. That was kind of dumb even though it served the funny plot narrative of Titus Pullo being the secret father of an Egyptian royal, Caesarion, and not Julius Caesar who everyone assumed was the real father.
    Yeah that was silly. But some things relating to Vorenus and Pullo were a bit silly, but entertaining to watch.
    Last edited by Knight of Heaven; October 23, 2020 at 07:42 AM.

  20. #20
    Kyriakos's Avatar Praeses
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    Default Re: Gal Gadot to play Cleopatra

    The casting could have been way worse. I mean at least Cleopatra isn't sub-saharan.
    And it is rather the norm to have non-greek actors play greek historical figures, so meh.

    Like I said, I don't plan to watch this, not even out of curiosity, so it would have been rather ridiculous to care
    Λέων μεν ὄνυξι κρατεῖ, κέρασι δε βούς, ἄνθρωπος δε νῷι
    "While the lion prevails with its claws, and the ox through its horns, man does by his thinking"
    Anaxagoras of Klazomenae, 5th century BC










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