It’s been Five years since Mo’Nique won the best supporting actress Academy Award for portraying Mary Lee Johnston in the dramatic film “Precious”. She is considered the first Afrikan American woman to have a late night talk show, on top of her many achievements in television with hit shows like; “The Parkers”, and movies like; “Welcome Home Roscoe Jenkins”, Mo’Nique is a well deserving, honorable, skilled “creative force to be reckoned with”.
Mo’Nique recently did an interview with the Hollywood Reporter and in it she revealed some very disturbing things about the industry. When asked by the interviewer; “How Has The Oscar Changed Your Life? Has it?” Monique’s answer was shocking;
“……What I understood was that when I won that Oscar, things would change in all the ways you’re saying: It should come with more respect, more choices and more money. It should, and it normally does. Hattie said, ‘After I won that award, it was as if I had done something wrong.’ It was the same with me. I thought, once you won the award, that’s the top prize — and so you’re supposed to be treated as if you got the top prize.
I got a phone call from Lee Daniels maybe six or seven months ago. And he said to me, ‘Mo’Nique, you’ve been blackballed.’ And I said, ‘I’ve been blackballed? Why have I been blackballed?’ And he said, ‘Because you didn’t play the game.’ And I said, ‘Well, what game is that?’ And he gave me no response. The next thing he said to me was, ‘Your husband is outbidding you.’ But he never asked me what [salary] we were asking for. You know, my husband [actor and producer Sidney Hicks] and I had to change things so we wouldn’t have to depend on [others]. So we do it independently. We’re very proud of taking the independent route, and we have a movie coming out on April 24 called Blackbird.” READ MORE HERE
As an actor, this idea of “playing the game” is often preached to actors in acting class, meetings, and in conversation. We hear it all the time, its who you know, “network”, basically kiss the right asses and you’ll be ok. If you remember Mo’Nique did not “campaign” when she got the Oscar nomination, they frowned upon her for not showing up at parties and campaigning like many actors do to win. The fact that she still won the award without it, spoke volumes for her talent, but apparently she “didn’t play the game” correctly, and was blackballed.
This is an issue for me because a talented actress whom I believe would never ask for something she is not owed has been treated unfairly, it makes me think as an actor if people are constantly blocking people out from making money, from working and providing for their families, not that Mo’Nique needs money from anyone, but for actors coming up, this is a problem. You cannot be a successful actress like Mo’Nique and be this “difficult” person Hollywood has painted her out to be, I just DON’T BELIEVE IT, but Mo’Nique said it best; “I respect everyone, from the homeless brother and sister on the street to the executive that sits in the highest office named President Barack Obama. I respect everyone — but we over-respect no one.”
This is what Lee Daniels had to say:
“Mo’nique is a creative force to be reckoned with. Her demands through Precious were not always in line with the campaign. This soured her relationship with the Hollywood community. I consider her a friend. I have and will always think of her for parts that we can collaborate on. However, the consensus among the creative teams and powers thus far were to go another way with these roles.”
HOW DO YOU FEEL ABOUT THIS “BLACKBALLED” THEORY IN HOLLYWOOD FAIR OR NAH?
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