Hollywood's whitewashing became more upsetting with this year's #OscarsSoWhite, which, really, is a harm to the industry as well considering films where half the cast isn't white make more money. Then there's box office success stories like the F. Gary Gray-directed Straight Outta Compton—the highest grossing film by a black director. Apparently not content with whitewashing Hollywood, Universal (the studio behind Compton) reportedly whitewashed the trailers for Straight Outta Compton on Facebook. A Universal employee made the reveal on Wednesday when explaining how he thinks these trailers contributed to Compton's success.
Universal Executive Vice President of digital marketing Doug Neil made the admission at SXSW panel, Vulture reports. Neil reportedly said different trailers for Compton were tailored to Facebook users of different races.
Per Business Insider, Facebook users who weren't black or Hispanic (but most likely white) didn't see trailers that mentioned N.W.A.—the groundbreaking rap group at the center of the film. According to Neil the trailer presented focused on how Ice Cube and Dr. Dre made it to where they are today. Neil said the assumption was that the "general population" didn't know Cube and Dre were rappers alleging they've become household names for their recent ventures. "They connected to Ice Cube as an actor and Dr. Dre as the face of Beats," said Neil.
Hispanics and black people reportedly saw the real Straight Outta Compton trailer. We're sure Neil and Universal would've used the Straight Outta Compton recut as Oscar bait trailer (meaning it's all about N.W.A.'s white manager fulfilling the white savior trope) had they thought of it first.
Next time, Universal.