Fact Check

Did Denzel Washington Refuse Role In Disney's 'Woke Cinematic Universe'?

A satirical article claimed the actor turned down an opportunity to "play a gay man who struggles with who he is." It's fiction.

Published Mar 31, 2023

 (Ivan Romano/Stringer, Getty Images)
Image Via Ivan Romano/Stringer, Getty Images
Denzel Washington refused an acting job in what he called Disney's "woke cinematic universe."

The satire site America's Last Line of Defense published an article claiming that Denzel Washington refused a "huge role" in what he supposedly called Disney's "woke cinematic universe," referencing the Marvel Cinematic Universe:

Denzel Washington Refuses To Work for Disney's "Woke Cinematic Universe"

Denzel Washington says he opted out of a huge role in the Marvel Cinematic Universe that would have netted him more than $30 million because he has no intention of "going woke."

"They wanted me to play a major character, but they wanted me to pretend he was secretly gay. I was supposed to play a gay man who struggles with who he is. In a superhero movie. No thanks."

At least one other website repeated the story, which was complete fiction.

We've previously fact-checked stories published by America's Last Line of Defense (dunning-kruger-times.com), which has the following disclaimer on its "About Us" page:

About Satire

Before you complain and decide satire is synonymous with "comedy":

sat·ire ˈsaˌtī(ə)r noun: The use of humor, irony, exaggeration, OR ridicule to expose and criticize people's stupidity or vices, particularly in the context of contemporary politics and other topical issues.

Everything on this website is fiction. It is not a lie and it is not fake news because it is not real. If you believe that it is real, you should have your head examined. Any similarities between this site's pure fantasy and actual people, places, and events are purely coincidental and all images should be considered altered and satirical. See above if you're still having an issue with that satire thing.

Washington has reportedly indicated he's open to acting in a Marvel movie. In January 2022, Washington joked in an interview with IMDB, "You better hurry!" when fellow actor Michael B. Jordan said he had some ideas about Washington joining the franchise.

For background, here is why we sometimes write about satire/humor.



"About Us." Dunning-Kruger-Times.Com, http://box5884.temp.domains/~dunning2/dunningkrugertimes/29-2/. Accessed 31 Mar. 2023.

Emery, David. "Did 'The View' Settle with Rittenhouse for $22 Million?" Snopes, 26 May 2022, https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/the-view-settles-rittenhouse-22-million/.

Fernández, Alexia. "Michael B. Jordan Wants Denzel Washington to Join the Marvel Cinematic Universe: I 'Got Some Things in Mind.'" People, https://people.com/movies/michael-b-jordan-wants-denzel-washington-to-join-the-marvel-cinematic-universe-i-got-some-things-in-mind/. Accessed 31 Mar. 2023.

Michael B. Jordan and Denzel Washington Answer Fan Questions | IMDbwww.imdb.com, https://www.imdb.com/video/vi3184378649/. Accessed 31 Mar. 2023.

Izz Scott LaMagdeleine is a fact-checker for Snopes.