'Tales of the City' wasn't diverse enough, says Armistead Maupin
Armistead Maupin, author of the Tales of the City series, has admitted that he made a "mistake" by only including white characters in the series.
Maupin was discussing the series during a Q&A following the premiere of the film The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin atOutfest Los Angeles LGBT Film Festival on Friday (July 14).
The book series, and subsequent television adaptation, which chronicles the lives of the residents of 28 Barbary Lane in San Francisco, is considered a landmark in the representation of LGBT+ characters in modern literature. However, Tales of the City, has also been considered for its lack of diversity in terms of race.
After being asked by an audience member about "a distinct lack of representation" of black queer characters in the series, Maupin admitted that he was "guilty" of whitewashing, reports The Advocate.
"I was scared as a writer that I would look uncool if I tried to represent people who were not of my race and didn’t do it well," Maupin replied. "That’s just stupid. I took on lesbians, and I didn’t think I knew anything about them. As I said in the [documentary], it’s about the human heart, so that was a mistake on my part."
The television adaptation of the series is reportedly set for a continuation on Netflix.
The streaming are in talks for a ten-part continuation of the series. The first three novels in the series were previously adapted with stars Laura Linney and Parker Posey in key roles.
Laura Linney and Olympia Dukakis will reprise their roles from the original miniseries, which ran in three installments from 1993 to 2001, Deadline reports.
Maupin, who will be an executive producer on the continuation, confirmed that the new season will feature a wider array of queer representation. "We are really remedying that in the new Tales of the City, the new [Netflix] television series," he said. "If I’m given credit for educating the rest of the world, I’ve also been educating myself in this whole process. But yeah, I agree with you, and we’re gonna do something about it.
"Thank you for sharing that, because I know how I felt, just as a queer person, not seeing myself represented in culture. So I get it."
The Untold Tales of Armistead Maupin will be released later this year.
Check out a trailer for the original miniseries below:
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