An Oscar is the most coveted trophy in the film industry, riding on the illusion that once you are an Academy Award winner, you’ve made it to the highest ranks of film and automatically obtain whichever role you want.
Well, Halle Berry is here to tell us that perception is just a myth. The 40-year-old – who is the first and only African-American woman to have won the award for Best Actress for her role in Monster’s Ball – says that winning did not change the roles she was offered.
“If anybody tells you after winning an Oscar they can pick out things that will be hits, they’re lying!”
On still being the only African-American actress to have won for Best Actress, twelve years later:
“I’m disappointed. I’m inspired though, when I see how many people of colour are doing such good work out there. The quality and value of our work isn’t determined by an award. I would like to see more of them recognised, absolutely, but we all need to find the win in the work, and doing our craft. The real win is when we’re not just selling stories of colour, that people of colour can be in everyday stories. Where we’re not saying: ‘These are the movies for black people.'”
On age playing a part in the roles she gets:
“I’ve always had a hard time getting roles, being of colour, so I’ve got as many available to me as I’ve always had – there’s no difference for me. When I was 21, it was as hard as it is now when I’m 48. For me it’s the same.”
The two-time mother also revealed what her dream role would be:
“I really would love to one day tell the story of Angela Davis. I don’t think she wants a story of her life to be told at this time, and I would never do that without her blessing. But that has always been a passion of mine. She’s just fascinating: the era she lived in, the Black Panthers and all that they stood for, and her connection to it, or not to it. I have a lot of respect for how she lived her life.”
After all the debacles with Ava DuVernay’s Selma snub, Patricia Arquette’s non-inclusive speech, and Zendaya’s dreadlocks at the Oscars, we know Hollywood still has a long way to go when it comes to accepting people of color.
SOURCE: The Guardian | PHOTO CREDIT: Getty