The Game of Thrones fanfare is back in full effect as the popular series premiered its prequel House of the Dragon on Sunday night.
Producers decided to get with the times and add a little diversity to the show this time around. Steve Toussaint , who plays the role of Lord Corlys stands out as one of the only Black faces in the show’s cast.
As a star on the new show, Toussaint is getting his first taste of all the attention that comes with being in GOT . The Britsh actor recently opened up to Men’s Health about all of the show’s fans who have been contacting him on social media, even the racist trolls with “toxic” criticism.
“It’s great that there are people excited,” Toussaint said. “What has been wonderful is for every toxic person that has somehow found their way into my timeline, there have been so many others who have been so supportive…”
While not all feedback has been negative, Toussaint is still surprised by how low some people can go when it comes to seeing diversity onscreen.
“There have been so many others who have been so supportive and been like, ‘Oh my god, I can’t wait, this is going to be great!’” he said.
Even on set, Toussaint says other actors have come up to him to express their excitement for the added representation in the prequel.
“Even when we were doing certain scenes, there would be supporting artists who would come up and go, ‘It’s great to have this representation,’” Toussaint said.
But the HBO star finds the racist critics comical, considering the period they’re representing and how early Hollywood whitewashed so much history and confused the new generation.
“So many people are basing their idea of the history of this country on a few films and stuff that were made in the ’50s, ’60s and ’70s, which don’t bear any resemblance to the truth,” Toussaint explained. “Historically, people of my hue and your hue, we didn’t just turn up here in the ’70s or the ’60s.”
“There was a point when the ruler of his country, ‘the Caesar,’ was an African man,” he continued.
“There are street names that tell you there were people who looked like us in this country even then, but for some reason, it seems to be very hard for people to swallow.”
As fantasy-filled and imaginary as the show is, Toussaint is surprised at how taken aback some viewers are by a Black man having a seat at the Small Council table.
“And as you said, they are happy with a dragon flying,” Toussaint said. “They’re happy with white hair and violet-colored eyes, but a rich Black guy? That’s beyond the pale.”
Written by Jeroslyn Johnson | Shared from Black Enterprise @blackenterprise