When the nominations for the 86th Annual Academy Awards were announced there was one huge snub that shocked movie critics world wide … Forest Whitaker’s, Lee Daniels’ The Butler.
But if you thought for one moment Whitaker was upset about The Butler not being nominated, guess again. During a recent phone interview to promote his new film Repentance, the actor explained that it’s about his craft not the awards.
“I’ve been doing this for years and my goal is purely to expand the human experience, to expand myself and connection with other people,” he said. “That’s my real goal. It’s always nice when people celebrate me or my work. But that’s not my real marker. It’s seems to be more of a marker for others.”
Among some of the other major snubs, Michael B. Jordan’s Fruitvale Station, a film which Whitaker co-produced. While the actor calls the film “beautifully done,” he further explains that it’s not always about the validation.
“It was some great performances, and I think people did acknowledge my work,” he said. “As far as nominations, you really just can’t allow yourself to get caught up. You just have to see how it flows.”
During the 2014 SAG Awards, HipHollywood caught up with Boardwalk Empire star Michael Kenneth Williams to talk about some of 2013’s best Black films not being recognized. Williams had the same approach as Whitaker, suggesting that it’s not about the award.
“I stay focused on the work and the fact that these films are being made,” Williams said when asked if the Black community is hyper-sensitive when Black films aren’t nominated. “The fact that Idris Elba made the Mandela film, the fact that we made 12 Years a Slave. The fact that Oprah Winfrey and Forest Whitaker told the story of The Butler, that’s the most important thing. That these stories are getting out there so that the next generation can see what happened, and see what who was who, and see what their stories were.”
“It’s nice to be recognized by the awards but if not the important thing as an actor is to stay focused on the work. Enjoy what you do,” the actor explained.
Dwyane Wade On New Heartfelt Documentary: It’s A Story “I Never Got A Chance To Tell As A Kid”
It’s been an epic week for Dwyane Wade and Gabrielle Union.
It first started with one of the biggest trades of the year with Wade returning back to Miami to finish the rest of the season with the Heat. “I was happy,” Wade told us on Thursday night about the trade.
He added, “The journey of the NBA took me to Chicago, it took me to Cleveland, but it also brought me back to Miami; a place from a basketball sense birthed me.”
Days following the big NBA announcement, the lovebirds then celebrated the release of Dwyane’s documentary, Shot in the Dark, which the NBA champion produced alongside Chance the Rapper.
The film follows the Orr Academy High School basketball team on Chicago’s Westside. Throughout the documentary, cameras capture the journey of individual athletes trying to make it to the NBA despite growing up in the violent streets of Chicago.
During the screening, Wade also opened up to HipHollywood about why the project was near and dear to his heart. “It’s home,” the Chicago native said. “I jumped on board right away because it’s a story being told that I never got a chance to tell as a kid. To be able to shed some positive light on a tough, dark situation for us was big.”
Union added, “I’m so proud. Coming up on Hoop Dreams … It explores so many other topics that are critical to kids in Chicago.”
As for whether or not D-Wade picked up some advice from his TV star boo, not quite. When asked what tips Union gave Wade ahead of the project, the actress told us, “None. You have to learn. Humility and school of hard knocks. Things are not going to go your way and you have to learn through experience just like the rest of us.”
Check out the documentary on February 24 on Fox Sports.
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