Selma director Ava DuVernay has welcomed an apology by film-makers accused of “whitewashing” forthcoming adventure movie Gods of Egypt.

Earlier this month, a series of character posters and the film’s trailer provoked uproar on social media for their predominantly white cast.

Last week both the film’s director, Alex Proyas, and studio, Lionsgate, apologised for the offence.

Proyas said it was clear “casting choices should have been more diverse”.

The action movie – due to be released early next year – sees white actors such as Gerard Butler, Rufus Sewell and Geoffrey Rush take centre stage in a film about warring Egyptian gods.

The publicity material prompted actress Bette Midler to tweet: “Movie, #GodsOfEgypt in which everyone is white? Egyptians, in history and today, have NEVER been white. BRING BACK GEOGRAPHY!! It’s Africa!”

‘Failure

“We recognise that it is our responsibility to help ensure that casting decisions reflect the diversity and culture of the time periods portrayed,” wrote Lionsgate in an official statement, released on Friday.

“In this instance we failed to live up to our own standards of sensitivity and diversity, for which we sincerely apologise.

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