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‘Get Out’ Awards Category Dilemma: Film Defies Easy Labels, Cast Says

Despite the eruption of controversy over the nomination of “Get Out” in the Golden Globe’s best musical or comedy category, the picture’s cast and producers appeared to have taken the social media furor in stride Friday night.

At a celebration for “Get Out” at Hollywood’s Lombardi house, producer Jason Blum said the film defies a neat category or label – and that’s a strength.

“It is all things: satire. It’s an action movie. It’s a comedy. It’s a drama. It’s a thriller. It’s a horror movie,” Blum told Variety. “That’s what makes it great, is that you can’t put it in a box.”

The critical response to the genre film has been very inspiring, Blum said, in part because it has brought an ongoing conversation about structural racism to the fore.

“The movie is making people think that you can really use genre to tell very, very important messages,” Blum said. “It makes people second-guess instantly dismissing genre in a way that they haven’t before,” he continued, adding that “if you can make genre movies that make the world a better place, I think that’s a good thing.”

Writer-director Jordan Peele addressed the controversy in a statement Friday, calling attention to how the film has been embraced by audiences.

“The reason for the visceral response to this movie being called a comedy is that we are still living in a time in which African American cries for justice aren’t being taken seriously,” Peele said. “It’s important to acknowledge that though there are funny moments, the systemic racism that the movie is about is very real. More than anything, it shows me that film can be a force for change. At the end of the day, call ‘Get Out’ horror, comedy, drama, action or documentary, I don’t care. Whatever you call it, just know it’s our truth.”

Allison Williams, who portrayed Rose Armitage, the sinister white girlfriend who brought home Daniel Kaluuya‘s Chis for her family to enslave via hypnosis as the latest in a string of black boyfriends, said it was challenging to explain the film to people.

“I know this firsthand from trying to describe it to my friends and family,” Williams said. “That was really hard. It’s kind of, ‘Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner?’ and ‘Rosemary’s Baby’ with a little ‘Key and Peele.’ And everyone was like, I have no idea what you’re describing.”

It was a story, she said, that immediately stood out for her when she first read the script. “It was unlike anything I had ever seen or thought about,” Williams recalled. “My first thought, was ‘Jordan, what is in your mind?’ And my second thought was, I have to do this.”

Kaluuya similarly said the film defies easy categorization.

“The most exciting thing about this film is that it’s never been done before,” Kaluuya said. “There’s nothing like it. Maybe there isn’t supposed to be a box for it.”

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