*The Critics Choice Association presents the Celebration of Black Cinema, an award show honoring the most visionary producers, directors, actors, and more who are dedicated to telling Black stories on film. EUR correspondent Briana Wright spoke to two of the show’s honorees, Shaka King and Delroy Lindo, about their recognition and their journey thus far.
Shaka King, film director, is receiving the Director Award for his new film “Judas and the Black Messiah,” the biopic of American civil rights activist and leader of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party, Chairman Fred Hampton. He discusses how his film is relevant to many of the hardships we’ve faced recently amidst the protests, riots, and demands for change.
“On the activist side of things, it’s a reminder that, you know, their work is not in vain and that they’re not alone and that they’re a part of a greater history and struggle.”
He goes on to pay homage to the work of Spike Lee, both old and new. He references his latest film, “Da 5 Bloods” and Delroy Lindo’s performance in it to have been one of his favorites.
“You know his early work, but even a movie like “Da 5 Bloods” which was one of my favorite movies of the year. I think, for me, it’s Delroy Lindo’s best performance ever and we’re talking about an actor who’s given you a lot of incredible performances.”
Shaka is right in that Delroy Lindo’s experience is beyond extensive and extraordinary; so much so, he’s being awarded the Career Achievement Award. When asked about his success thus far, he humbly pats himself on the back.
“When I think about what has happened in the last year, in terms of the film [“Da 5 Bloods”] coming out and the response to the film, I’ve worked for it.”
The film is a Spike Lee joint about Black Veterans who return to Vietnam for their hidden fortune, but face conflict along the way. Delroy gets emotional discussing the response he got from Black Vets who reached out to him with gratitude.
“I can’t ask for any more than that. It’s been extraordinary and very very humbling.”
The Third Annual Celebration of Black Cinema will take place virtually on February 2nd and air its special presentation on Saturday, February 6 via KTLA-TV (KTLA.com).