There's a reason that watching Leon Schuster movies no longer feels the same once you get older.
Seeing someone play into stereotypes about the people you grew up around, making fun of the way they are and making a fool out of them isn't funny anymore once you know better. It's even worse when the person playing this role has to wear a costume and prosthetics that often exaggerate certain features that you would be mocked for having naturally.
Wokeness spoiled Leon Schuster for me. Oh Shucks was funny. Now all I see is stereotypes and black face— Archduke (@Homa10i) May 17, 2017
I've stopped watching Leon Schuster movies. The man thinks that black face is a joke and degrading black people is hilarious— Trev (@Tokyo_Trev) May 13, 2017
Leon Schuster Made Millions Off Black Face. Mama Jack Lowkey The Most Offensive Movie Of All Time. Lmaoooo But We Didn't Know 😂😂😂😂— George Mnguni (@Okay_Wasabi) September 19, 2016
These observations have not gone unnoticed by Schuster who has promised never to do it again even though he is dying to.
Speaking to the Sunday Times about his career thus far and his upcoming film, the 67-year-old actor and producer said that he has received numerous messages from fans over the years begging him not to do it ever again. He said he will respect their wishes and agrees with what they are saying, but admitted that it bothers him that he can no longer make the films he has become famous for.
"I'm so sorry that I can't make Mama Jack 2. If I had a dream come true, my next movie would be Mama Jack 2. But especially on Twitter they said stay away from the blackface, it's not on. It was black people talking to me and you've got to listen. I can't do it because I'll be heavily criticised. In the olden days it troubled nobody. But I won't go blackface now, I can't do it. There's not one actor in the world that will. It's just racist," explained Schuster.
He also alluded to the fact that black people are the only people he will stop making fun of because he thinks the other ethnic groups do not mind.
"Cape coloureds have got a very, very good sense of humour. The way they speak, the way they sing. They've just got a fantastic sense of humour. I've never had a coloured guy who turned around and said: 'You're not going to use me.' I used them for their colourful language. That's the reason. They speak an Afrikaans which is soos 'n engel wat op my oor piepie [like an angel peeing on my ear]. I love the coloureds," said Schuster.
His new film, 'Frank & Fearless', which will be in cinemas from November 23 onwards, will focus on rhino poaching. It stars the likes of Khanyi Mbau, Kenneth Nkosi and Themba Ntuli.
Main image credit: mtv.co.za