Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 21 November 2019

'Men in Black' writer Ed Solomon told 'we do not need an old white male's mansplanation' when he offered to resolve movie debate

The movie writer overhead a debate about his film and offered to help, only to be shut down

Writer Ed Soloman attends the 'Now You See Me' Premiere in New York City, in May 2013. AFP 
Writer Ed Soloman attends the 'Now You See Me' Premiere in New York City, in May 2013. AFP 

While Ed Solomon may not be a household name, the movies he has penned certainly are. The American writer, producer and director is behind the scripts of a number of popular films, including Bill and Ted's Excellent Adventure, Now You See Me and Men in Black; the third of which got him in an awkward situation this week.

On Tuesday, October 15, the writer was sat in a cafe when he overheard people talking about the 1997 movie, which starred Tommy Lee Jones and Will Smith. It seems they were confused about the movie's story origins, when – very much in the right place at the right time – Solomon offered to clear the debate up, only to be told, "I'm sorry, we do not need an old white male's mansplanation."

Revealing the encounter on Twitter, he said, "So I apologised and that was that."

But that was not that, as it turned out.

The 59-year-old writer then added: "By the way – it's not like that was the first thing that was said; we'd actually exchanged small talk about various things over the course of their meal and my work."

And he then mentioned that they came over to apologise on their way out of the cafe, saying: "OK, on the way out of the bathroom, as they were leaving, her friend apologised and said I just got them on a bad day for that.

Film writer, Ed Solomon is behind the 1997 'Men in Black' script. Courtesy Columbia Pictures 
Film writer, Ed Solomon is behind the 1997 'Men in Black' script. Courtesy Columbia Pictures 

"I said no worries, no need to apologise and she said, 'Well regardless she shouldn't have used the word "old" like that' and I literally laughed out loud," he said of the encounter.

The people in the cafe then reached out to Solomon, a matter of hours after he first tweeted about the run in.

"She wrote to me," he exclaimed on Twitter. "She saw this thread on Reddit and realised it was her and she reached out! Oh my god it was so sweet. And she really made me laugh at the end cause she said basically, 'PS which one of us was right, me or my friend?'"

It was her who was correct about the original dispute, Solomon added.

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Updated: October 16, 2019 10:09 AM

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