Controversial actor Laurence Fox to perform at Edinburgh's Voodoo Rooms

The actor and musician has been vocal in his criticism of "woke" culture in recent weeks

Wednesday, 22nd January 2020, 4:56 pm
Updated Wednesday, 22nd January 2020, 5:19 pm
Laurence Fox, who criticised 1917 director Sam Mendes for including Sikh soldiers in the World War One film, is performing at Edinburgh next month (Getty Images)

Edinburgh venue Voodoo Rooms is playing host to actor Laurence Fox next month in the wake of controversial appearances on Question Time and The James Delingpole Podcast.

Described on the West Register Street venue's official website as "an award nominated English actor, singer and songwriter", Fox attracted widespread criticism for comments about successful black actors, Meghan Markle and Sikh soldiers.

Tickets for the event are listed at £19.25, with eight further dates lined up, including a performance at Glasgow's Oran Mor.

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Sikh soldiers played a prominent role in Great Britain's World War One efforts (Getty Images)

'We're the most tolerant country in Europe'

During his appearance on Question Time, the 41-year-old actor dismissed claims by race and ethnicity researcher and university lecturer Rachel Boyle that the Duchess of Sussex Meghan Markle had suffered racism at the hands of some members of the press.

He claimed: "It's not racism... we're the most tolerant, lovely country in Europe.

"It's so easy to throw the charge of racism and it's really starting to get boring now".

'Sikh inclusion in World War One film incongruous'

Fox also caused outrage following his appearance on The James Delingpole Podcast when he described the inclusion of Sikh's in World War One-era film 1917 as "incongruous". These comments attracted scorn with many pointing out that approximately 1.5 million Indians - many of whom were Sikh - fought on behalf of the British Empire in World War One.

Speaking to James Delingpole, London editor of Breitbart - a far-right American news title - Laurence Fox said: "It’s very heightened awareness of the colour of someone’s skin because of the oddness in the casting. Even in 1917 they’ve done it with a Sikh soldier.

"Which is great, it’s brilliant, but you’re suddenly aware there were Sikhs fighting in this war. And you’re like “okay”. You’re now diverting me away from what the story is."

Fox went on to say that the film was "good" with Delingpole adding "apart from the gratuitous Sikh"

Black actors only speak out about racism once they're famous

During the podcast Fox also criticised minority actors who spoke out against racism in the industry.

He claimed that black actors only highlight "how racism is rampant and rife in the industry" once they've achieved fame.

Fox, the son of actor James Fox and former pupil of Harrow School, said: "The most annoying thing is the minute a black actor – it's the same with working-class actors – the minute they've got five million quid in the bank, every interview they do is about how racism is rampant and rife in the industry.

"And with working-class actors, 'There's not enough working-class actors'. You weren't saying that when you didn't have a f*****g pot to p**s in were you?"

Edinburgh author Irvine Welsh was one of the actor's many detractors, responding: "Literally ALL every working class actor I’ve spoken to over last 30 years has said is: they’ve been frozen out by toffs doing bad w/c accents and playing cliched stereotypes. The complainers are posh actors who haven’t made it as big as they’d like in spite of their connections."

Voodoo Rooms have been contacted for comment.