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John Boyega Calls Out 'Game Of Thrones' For Not Casting People Of Colour

He's got a point.

07/20/2017 10:28 EDT | Updated 07/20/2017 10:29 EDT

We know it's getting better for people of colour in Hollywood.

Disney hired Ava DuVernay, a black woman, to direct her first blockbuster ("A Wrinkle in Time"); TV shows are becoming more inclusive ("Master of None," "Atlanta," "Fresh off the Boat," "Black-ish," "Empire," etc.); and more visible minorities are starring in Oscar-winning films ("Hidden Figures," "Moonlight").

But the gains remain modest, and one "Star Wars" actor is calling out Hollywood for its lack of diversity.

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John Boyega attends The Olivier Awards 2017 at Royal Albert Hall on April 9, 2017 in London, England. (Photo by David M. Benett/Dave Benett/Getty Images)

John Boyega, who plays Finn in the new "Star Wars" films, recently criticized "Game of Thrones" and "The Lord of the Rings" for not making an effort to be diverse in its casting choices.

"There are no black people on 'Game of Thrones.' You don't see one black person in 'Lord of the Rings,'" Boyega said in a recent interview with GQ. "I ain't paying money to always see one type of person on-screen. Because you see different people from different backgrounds, different cultures, every day. Even if you're a racist, you have to live with that. We can ruffle up some feathers."

But, as Refinery29 notes, "Game of Thrones" casting director Nina Gold disagrees, telling Vanity Fair in a recent interview that the fantasy series doesn't have a diversity problem.

Mario Anzuoni / Reuters
The cast of "Game of Thrones."

"In the books, the Targaryens are these white, white people with silver hair and violet eyes. The Starks are kind of rough, like Northern English people. The Lannisters are golden, aren't they? We really believed we were doing it like the books, basically... I guess I don't know what to really say about it, because it's not like there's no diversity in the casting in 'Game of Thrones,'" Gold said. We've turned Grey Worm and Missandei into really deep characters... I really do believe in diversity in casting, and always have done. I don't feel I have to defend it, really."

Boyega does have a point: none of the main characters in "Lord of the Rings" and "Game of Thrones" are people of colour (Grey Worm and Missandei are secondary characters at best), and this lack of diversity can also be found in many sci-fi and fantasy movies and TV shows.

And this is especially true for women of colour, who are rarely chosen to lead popular franchises.

Corbis via Getty Images
Jodie Whittaker is the new Doctor in "Doctor Who."

After British actress Jodie Whittaker (who is white) was announced as the new Doctor in "Doctor Who," some said that casting a white woman isn't enough in the steps towards diversity.

"I see people talking about how we've come so far and how roles for women have improved so much. And then I look at the examples they give," Melissa Perez, a writer for Black Girl Nerds, told CP. "All the characters are white — they're white women."

While there are many sci-fi, comic, and fantasy movies and shows that feature women, such as Marvel's "Jessica Jones," "Star Wars: The Force Awakens," "Rogue One: A Star Wars Story," and "Van Helsing," none of them star women of colour.

"You can have dragons and magic ... but having anyone that's not white is going too far," Perez added.

There is some hope, though. The upcoming "Star Trek: Discovery" features a diverse cast of women who play important, lead roles.

CBS via Getty Images
Sonequa Martin Green to play First Officer Michael Burnham in STAR TREK: DISCOVERY, coming to CBS All Access. (Photo by CBS via Getty Images)

Two women of colour, "The Walking Dead's" Sonequa Martin-Green and "Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon's" Michelle Yeoh, play a commander and a first officer, respectively.

And for all the trolls who don't want to see a kickass woman of colour lead a starship, Martin-Green — the first black woman to lead a "Star Trek" cast — has some words for you.

"I would encourage them to key into the essence and spirit of 'Star Trek' that has made it the legacy it is — and that's looking across the way to the person sitting in front of you and realizing you are the same, that they are not separate from you, and we are all one," Martin-Green told Entertainment Weekly.

"That's something 'Star Trek' has always upheld and I completely believe that is why it's been a mainstay in society in the hearts of so many people for so many decades. I would encourage them to look past their opinions and social conditioning and key into what we're doing here — which is telling a story about humanity that will hopefully bring us all together."