Disney responded to Peter Dinklage's criticisms of the company's plan to remake Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs as a live-action movie Tuesday. Dinklage called out the studio hypocritical for being "very proud" to cast a Latina star as Snow White while still making a "f—ing backward story about seven dwarfs living in a cave together." The new Snow White movie will star West Side Story actress Rachel Zegler in the title role.
"There's a lot of hypocrisy going on," Dinklage said on Marc Maron's new WTF Podcast episode. "Literally no offense to anyone, but I was a little taken aback when they were very proud to cast a Latina actress as Snow White. But you're still telling the story of Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs. Take a step back and look at what you're doing there. It makes no sense to me."
Zegler's casting means the movie is only "progressive in one way," the Game of Thrones star told Maron. "Take a step back and look at what you're doing there. It makes no sense to me. You're progressive in one way, but then you're still making that f—ing backward story about seven dwarfs living in a cave together. What the f— are you doing, man? Have I done nothing to advance the cause from my soapbox? I guess I'm not loud enough."
After Dinklage's comments went viral on social media, Disney told The Hollywood Reporter it plans to find a different way to depict the seven dwarfs characters. "To avoid reinforcing stereotypes from the original animated film, we are taking a different approach with these seven characters and have been consulting with members of the dwarfism community," the studio said. "We look forward to sharing more as the film heads into production after a lengthy development period."
The live-action Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs is still years away from hitting theaters, although it is already three years into development. The studio has been playing to create new versions of the dwarf characters from the start, according to THR. The movie stars Zegler as Snow White, Gal Gadot as the Evil Queen, and Andrew Burnap in a new male role. Benji Pasek and Justin Paul (Dear Even Hanson) are writing new songs and Marc Webb (The Amazing Spider-Man) is directing. Marc Platt, who is now working on a live-action The Little Mermaid for Disney, is producing.
Walt Disney chose the Brothers Grimm Snow White fairy tale as the story for his first full-length animated feature. The film was a huge success in 1937 and joined the U.S. Library of Congress's National Film Registry in 1989. In the movie, the dwarfs are depicted as seven men who live in the same cabin and each has names that reflect their personality.