Faizon Love, the actor who played Shane in the 2009 movie Couples Retreat, is suing Universal for race discrimination after he was cut off the international version of the movie poster.
The American version of the movie poster featured the four couples in the movie – Vince Vaughn and Malin Akerman, Jason Bateman and Kristen Bell, Jon Favreau and Kristin Davis, and finally Faizon and Kali Hawk.
The international version cut Faizon and Kali, the only non-white couple, out of the picture and they didn’t receive billing above the title.
“This film was a big money-maker for Universal, but instead of honoring my work and my contract, the studio chose to render me invisible to billions of moviegoers around the world,” Faizon said in a statement with his lawsuit (via Variety).
Variety reports that Universal regretted the decision when the movie came out and they vowed to discontinue the poster, but when Faizon recently discovered that the poster was still being circulated, he decided to file the lawsuit.
The lawsuit claims that Vince Vaughn was used to try and make Faizon feel better about the situation. The suit claims that the actor “went so far as to tell Mr. Love that making a big deal about his removal from the poster would not be good for his career at that time.”
Faizon says that the then-chairman of Universal Pictures called to apologize and they discussed future projects, but nothing ever happened to push his career forward.
“They have not only hurt me financially, they have hurt me in a deeper way by dismissing me because of my Blackness — and they have hurt all Black performers by continuing to perpetuate racism in the movie industry,” he said. “I want to ensure that future generations don’t have to endure the racism and whitewashing that I have experienced.”
Vince was recently involved in a different controversy that he isn’t sorry about.
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