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Academy Award-winner Ben Affleck is owning up to rumors that he asked the producers Finding Your Roots to edit out footage revealing his ancestors as slave owners. Affleck took to Facebook to let fans know he was embarrassed by the revelation and thus tried to hide it from the public:

“After an exhaustive search of my ancestry for Finding Your Roots, it was discovered that one of my distant relatives was an owner of slaves.

I didn’t want any television show about my family to include a guy who owned slaves. I was embarrassed. The very thought left a bad taste in my mouth.

Skip decided what went into the show. I lobbied him the same way I lobby directors about what takes of mine I think they should use. This is the collaborative creative process. Skip agreed with me on the slave owner but made other choices I disagreed with. In the end, it’s his show and I knew that going in. I’m proud to be his friend and proud to have participated.

It’s important to remember that this isn’t a news program. Finding Your Roots is a show where you voluntarily provide a great deal of information about your family, making you quite vulnerable. The assumption is that they will never be dishonest but they will respect your willingness to participate and not look to include things you think would embarrass your family.

I regret my initial thoughts that the issue of slavery not be included in the story. We deserve neither credit nor blame for our ancestors and the degree of interest in this story suggests that we are, as a nation, still grappling with the terrible legacy of slavery. It is an examination well worth continuing. I am glad that my story, however indirectly, will contribute to that discussion. While I don’t like that the guy is an ancestor, I am happy that aspect of our country’s history is being talked about.

A PBS spokesperson claims in a statement that an internal review investigating “the circumstances” surrounding Affleck’s episode is being launched.

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1 Comment

  1. annum004

    April 23, 2015 at 8:25 PM

    Even if your ancestors were slave owners, that doesn’t mean you’re one.

    Also, some slave owners were humane.

    My roots prove it. John De Balcomie treated us better than his own son, and when we were freed, we stayed home because it was better at home than anywhere else in the world.

    Also today, people are Chattel status.

    I believe slavery is a good thing if 2 or more parties enter into a bilateral contract legally with mutual assent.

    I believe that would help much of the economy.

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EXCLUSIVES

Watch: Julia Roberts And Owen Wilson Give Advice To Their 10-Year-Old Selves

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To say Wonder is a must see movie is an understatement! Not only will the film touch you and inspire you to be a better person, it will also entertain you from start to finish.

But don’t take our word for it. HipHollywood sat down with the film’s stars Julia Roberts and Owen Wilson who shared their excitement to bring this heartwarming story to life and how they channeled their real-life parenting skills into the role.

“I think we felt a responsibility to be authentically parents and authentically parents to these two kids, said the 50 year old mother of three. “And I think that’s why you really believe these four people are family and are really having this experience together.”

In the film based on the NY times best seller, Roberts and Wilson play the parents of a teenage daughter (Izabela Vidovic) and 10-year-old boy (Jacob Tremblay) with facial differences entering mainstream elementary school for the first time.

When asked if they had any advice for their ten year old selves, Roberts said: “I have a ten year old son and I tell him to run.”

Meanwhile Wilson says he remembers 5th grade vividly, and enjoyed having his brother Andrew Wilson at the same school to protect him. “It helped so much having an older brother who was already at the school, so that would be the advice I’d give, have a cool older brother.”

Wonder hits theaters November 17, just one day before Wilson’s 49th birthday. 

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