Actress Nia Long said she did not get a lead role in the 2000 hit Charlie’s Angels because she was too “old” and “black”.
Long told Insider that she auditioned for the role of Alex Lundy but was later told by her agent that she “looked too old” to act alongside the film’s costar Drew Barrymore, who is four years her junior.
The role eventually went to Lucy Liu who is two years older than Long.
Long said, “The feedback that I received from my agent was, ‘She just looked too old and sophisticated to be next to Drew Barrymore.’”
The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air actress added,”I love Drew Barrymore, I think she’s amazing, but I think that was just a nice way to say you’re a little too black. Personally, that’s what I think. Because if you notice there were no brown skin. I mean, honestly, I would have been the blackest thing in the film.
“And I’m thinking to myself, it’s an actor’s choice to walk in the room how they want to look, but it’s a director’s vision to help create and curate a character. So if you couldn’t see beyond the fact that I had on a blazer and a pair of jeans then that was clearly not the job and opportunity for me. So, no problem, I’ll keep it moving.”
She went on to star in the successful Big Momma’s House opposite Martin Lawrence that year.