• Egyptian? (Gods of Egypt)Source: Gods of Egypt
The Internet is giving Hollywood a history lesson.
Andrea Booth

30 Nov 2015 - 11:32 AM  UPDATED 8 Dec 2015 - 4:58 PM

In a rare move from Hollywood, Australian director Alex Proyas apologised on Friday for casting upcoming movie epic Gods of Egypt with all-white actors.

"The process of casting a movie has many complicated variables, but it is clear that our casting choices should have been more diverse," Proyas said in a statement.

"I sincerely apologise to those who are offended by the decisions we made."

"I sincerely apologise to those who are offended by the decisions we made."

The film, based on a tale in Egyptian mythology, stars Abbey Lee, Brenton Thwaites, Chadwick Boseman, Courtney Eaton, Elodie Young, Geoffrey Rush, Gerald Butler, Nikolaj Coster-Waldau and Rufus Sewel.

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In protest against Proyas' casting of Australian, Swedish, British, and French actors, social media is brimming with images and snippets of the real Egyptian history.

Entertainment company Lions Gate Entertainment, which is releasing the film, added it was aware of its responsibility to help ensure casting decisions reflect the diversity and culture of the stories it tells.

"In this instance we failed to live up to our own standards of sensitivity and diversity, for which we sincerely apologise," it said in a statement.

Some industry members saw Proyas and Lions Gate's apology as one of the first moves in the right direction towards racial diversity and historical accuracy in film.

Others were less forgiving.

Proya's apology came after strong criticism on social media over the past couple of days.

Racism in film dates back to the early 20th CenturyBirth of a Nation was one such movie that set the agenda, screening white actors in blackface.

Gods of Egypt is set for release on 26 February 2016.

This is the official synopsis: "In this spectacular action-adventure inspired by the classic mythology of Egypt, the survival of mankind hangs in the balance as an unexpected mortal hero Bek (Brenton Thwaites) undertakes a thrilling journey to save the world and rescue his true love.

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"In order to succeed, he must enlist the help of the powerful god Horus (Nikolaj Coster-Waldau) in an unlikely alliance against Set (Gerard Butler), the merciless god of darkness, who has usurped Egypt’s throne, plunging the once peaceful and prosperous empire into chaos and conflict.

"As their breathtaking battle against Set and his henchmen takes them into the afterlife and across the heavens, both god and mortal must pass tests of courage and sacrifice if they hope to prevail in the epic final confrontation.”

Gods of Egypt