D Kevin McNeirEntertainment

First-Time Oscar Wins for Regina King, ‘Sentimental Favorite’ Spike Lee

Regina King, who many may remember as a child actor on the popular sitcom, “227,” was chosen as Best Supporting Actress for her role in Barry Jenkins’ “If Beale Street Could Talk,” based on the same-titled novel by the great James Baldwin, in which she plays Sharon Rivers, a matriarch whose spirit is as strong as her love for her family.

During her acceptance speech, she described herself as one who is an “example of what it looks like when love and support is poured into someone,” later adding, “God is good all the time.” She frequently referred to and thanked her mother for her many years of encouragement and support.

Regina King (Best Actress in a Supporting Role: If Beale Street Could Talk) poses in the press room at the 91st Annual Academy Awards at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California on February 24, 2019.
Regina King (Best Actress in a Supporting Role: If Beale Street Could Talk) poses in the press room at the 91st Annual Academy Awards at the Dolby Theatre in Hollywood, California on February 24, 2019.

King becomes one of only three Black actresses who have won both an Oscar and a Primetime Emmy Award, the others being Viola Davis and Halle Berry, who won their Oscars in 2016 and 2001, respectively. King has three Emmys, which she won in 2015, 2016 and 2018. In an interview with CNN, King said she felt like she’d been “preparing for this role all my life.”

But the sentimental favorite for this year’s Academy Awards had to be Spike Lee who has not fared well, at least in the minds of those who vote for the nominees and winners of the Oscar. Lee accepted the award for Best Adapted Screenplay for his film, “BlacKkKlansman,” his first competitive Oscar after receiving an honorary award several years ago. Lee took to the stage with obvious excitement before launching into his acceptance speech which addressed how deeply he feels about the significance of Black history including heartfelt thanks to his grandmother who provided the funds so he could attend college.

He has been nominated twice in his career, for the 1997 documentary “4 Little Girls” and for “Do the Right Thing” in 1989 but has never won.

Commenting on the upcoming 2020 presidential election, he said, “Let’s all mobilize. Let’s all be on the right side of history. Make the moral choice between love versus hate. Let’s do the right thing! You know I had to get that in there.”

D. Kevin McNeir – Senior Editor

Dominic Kevin McNeir is an award-winning journalist with more than 25 years of service for the Black Press (NNPA). Prior to moving East to assist his aging parents, the native Detroiter engineered a transformation of The Miami Times resulting in its being named the NNPA’s “Publication of the Year” in 2011 – just one of several dozen industry-related awards he’s earned in his career. He currently serves as senior editor for The Washington Informer. There, in the heart of the U.S. Capitol, he displays a keen insight for developing front-page news as it unfolds within the greater Washington area, capturing the crucial facts and facets of today’s intriguing, political arena. He has degrees from The University of Michigan, Emory University and Princeton Theological Seminary. In 2020, he received First Place for Weekly Newspaper, Commentary & Criticism, Society of Professional Journalists, Washington, D.C. Pro Chapter. Learn more about him at www.dkevinmcneir.com, Facebook – Kevin McNeir, Twitter - @mcneirdk, Linkedin – D. Kevin McNeir or email: mcneirdk@washingtoninformer.com.

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