White Chicks is a complicated movie. Now isn’t the time for us to wax philosophical about its political correctness (or lack thereof), but Marlon Wayans — who, along with his brother Shawn, starred as the whiteface-wearing FBI agents in the 2004 film — still thinks provocative comedies in its camp are “needed” in 2022.
Wayans chatted about White Chicks‘ legacy in a recent interview with Buzzfeed, and whether it could thrive now. In case you didn’t spend much time in a Blockbuster in the 2000s, the movie follows two Black FBI detectives who pose as white socialite sisters to help solve a kidnapping case. Though it actually offered some surprisingly valid commentary on racial stereotypes in the context of law enforcement, it also prompted accusations of reverse racism: “I think [movies like White Chicks are] needed,” Wayans said. “I don’t know what planet we’re on, where you think people don’t need laughter, and that people need to be censored and canceled. If a joke is gonna get me canceled, thank you for doing me that favor.”
The comedian went on: “It’s sad that society is in this place where we can’t laugh anymore. I ain’t listening to this damn generation. I ain’t listening to these folks: These scared-ass people, these scared executives. Y’all do what you want to do? Great. I’m still gonna tell my jokes the way I tell them. And if you want to make some money, jump on board. And if not, then I’ll find a way to do it myself. I know my audience. My audience comes to my shows every weekend and they leave feeling great and laughing. One thing about the Wayans, we’ve always told the worst joke the best way.”
Sure, White Chicks relies on some cheap punchlines and gags that haven’t necessarily aged well, like the covert transphobia of crossdressing for comedic effect. (Thankfully, Wayans has also refused doing that rumored sequel if it, too, involves sitting in a makeup chair for seven hours a day.) But in terms of “canceling,” we don’t think White Chicks is worth getting too worked up over in 2022 — we have bigger fish to fry.
Back in 2020, we saw Wayans as the husband of Rashida Jones in Sofia Coppola’s drama On the Rocks.