Laverne Cox Speaks Out On Julianne Hough Blackface Halloween Costume
Julianne Hough has not gotten any supporters when it comes to her blackface Halloween costume, including the cast of Orange is the New Black. Hough darkened the skin around her face and neck for her Halloween costume as “Crazy Eyes” (a.k.a. Suzanne), but has faced backlash from fans who felt that going blackface was racist. Transgender African-American actress Laverne Cox, who plays Sophia Burset on the Netflix series, is the latest person to slam Hough for her choice of costume.
Speaking to Us Weekly, Cox said that only “ignorance” could justify Hough’s decision to go in blackface for Halloween. “I don’t think Julianne is making a specific informed choice to comment on blackness. I just think it’s out of this ignorance,” she said. “It was a shame that she is in this country, that she would wear blackface and not understand the historical implications of that.”
Talk show host Wendy Wiliams also criticized Hough earlier this week for being “ignorant” with her choice of Halloween costume. “I don’t know what part of stupid — or, excuse me, less than smart — she is. Who walks out of the house in blackface?” Williams asked. “This was an intentional move. This was not something that happened all of a sudden and she was like, ‘Oh, is this racist?’ You talk about your Halloween costume. You don’t just show up in blackface. Which means she’s not just less than smart off the cuff — she’s less than smart even when she thinks about it.”
The talk show host also alleged that the Utah-born Hough “grew up someplace where there weren’t a lot of black people.” Her brother, Dancing with the Stars pro Derek Hough, denied there was any racist thought or ill-intent in wearing it. “Obviously it wasn’t her brightest moment in life, but hopefully we can move on,” he said. “She’s so apologetic … and I just hope that we can all forgive her.”
Hough also took to her Twitter page over the weekend and issued an apology for the costume. “I am a huge fan of the show Orange is the New Black, actress Uzo Aduba, and the character she has created,” she tweeted. “It certainly was never my intention to be disrespectful or demeaning to anyone in any way. I realize my costume hurt and offended people and I truly apologize.”