Alexandra Shipp as Storm in “X-Men: Apocalypse” Was She Dark Enough For the Role?

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Alexandra Shipp’s recent role as young Storm in the film “X-Men: Apocalypse” has some comic fans in an uproar over the movie’s casting. Was Alexandra Shipp not dark enough for the role? Shipp’s role as Storm was previously played by Halle Berry who like Shipp is also bi-racial. With the repeat casting of not so dark women of color, fans are wondering if Hollywood feels that authentic darker skinned black women are not good enough for the role.

“What’s the real issue, it’s not like they cast a white woman as Storm, does it really need to be this complicated?”

Well according to black nerd community, Yeah, it kind of does. The black superhero Storm has always been depicted as a dark skinned woman in the comic books.

Even as a fictional character, Storm is a feminist symbol for Black Women the way that most assume Wonder Woman has been for women all these years. Storm has always been powerful, goddess-like and African. And no, not Charlize Theron, South African. Her dark complexion has always been part of her appearance and it’s not by accident. The same way it isn’t an accident that Storm has become a beacon and symbol for women with darker skin for decades now. The unwillingness to recognize that is just another thunderbolt in the side of a demographic of women who frankly, are plenty used to it by now. Still not understanding the public contempt for this casting choice? OK…

Regardless of how some feel about the choice of casting a lighter skinned black woman for the character Storm, credit should be given to Alexandra Shipp, who is  a representation of a powerful black woman.   Shipp is best known for her roles on the TV series “House of Anubis,” and as the lead role in the biographical television film “Aaliyah: The Princess of R&B.” She’s also appeared in films such as “Alvin and the Chipmunks: The Squeakquel,” “Switched at Birth,” “Drumline: A New Beat,” and as Kimberly Woodruff in “Straight Outta Compton, ” and now she’ll be known for her role in X-Men.

I want to give girls an accurate representation of a powerful black woman. Halle Berry did such a great job that I felt the fear of living up to her Storm. But I also felt the fear of living up to my own nerdy expectations. I’m a fan of X-Men. I grew up on the cartoons. I grew up reading the comics. I wanted to do that right. I wasn’t sleeping, just going over my Arabic and my Kenyan accent all the time. I wanted to make sure that girls who see this movie, young girls of any race or color, are excited by Storm and the way I portrayed her.” – Alexandra Shipp



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