Belfast Telegraph

Oyelowo: Oscars snub bothers me

David Oyelowo believes “frustration is an emotion which doesn’t lend itself to creativity.”

The British actor plays the lead role of Martin Luther King, Jr. in the historical drama. Despite receiving excellent reviews, the film failed to pick up as many Oscar nominations as was expected, including the star being snubbed in the Best Actor category.

“Yeah, it bothers me. It bothers me because it’s the best reviewed film of the year. It’s a film that doesn’t direct or act itself,” he confessed to the British edition of Esquire. “It bothers me because it’s Dr King – one of the most significant human beings in American life and I want him celebrated. Whether we like it or not, these accolades feed into that legacy.”

But despite being overlooked, the 38-year-old is pleased with how the film has transcended the awards and that the audience genuinely loves the movie.

As well as his lead role in Selma, David has appeared in Lincoln, The Butler and Interstellar. His success has come slightly later in life but he admits that he’s glad it’s turned out that way and would tell his 20-year-old self not to panic.

“Be patient. Frustration is an emotion which doesn’t lend itself to creativity, so I would urge myself to be patient and tell myself that sometimes things taking longer is a good thing,” he added. “Because you’re more equipped and ready. With what I do for a living, early success can be destructive.”

Someone who has helped him feel better able to handle success is his Selma and The Butler co-star, Oprah Winfrey. And David couldn’t heap enough praise on the media mogul.

“She has helped me with navigating success, money, family, fame and people,” he explained. “She’s like a mother to me; it’s extraordinary to have her as a voice in my life.”

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