December 28, 2012

Malik Yoba Tries to Knock Denzel Washington Off 'Mount Rushmore' of Black Male Actors

If you were creating a Mount Rushmore focused on Black male actors ... it is unlikely that Malik Yoba would be on it. On the other hand, I'm fairly certain that Denzel Washington would have his face carved in stone on that mountain. Don't you agree?

Malik hasn't been doing much work over the years. I'm glad that he has a chance to stretch himself with an upcoming role as Martin Luther King Jr. on a BET movie. However, I'm disappointed that he answered a question about Denzel's acting talents by saying:
"No matter how many movies Denzel Washington does, he’s still Denzel in every movie – except for the times he played Malcolm X and Rubin ‘Hurricane’ Carter. Those were the roles where he got a chance to stretch a little more. I want to be more like Forest Whitaker in Last King of Scotland. I want to stretch a little more, that’s what I want to do. So playing Martin, I had no fear. It was like here’s a real opportunity to do something. I’m still thrilled about it and I can’t wait to see the finished film."
I guess I should appreciate Malik for being candid in his response. I just don't happen to agree with him. Denzel has been playing a wide variety of roles in his movies. The only common denominator is that bad-ass walk of his. Denzel manages to get a couple of shots in every movie that show him simply walking ... because he has the coolest walk in the history of the cinema.

On another note ... who would be the other three Black male actors on Mount Rushmore in your opinion?

11 comments:

Reggie said...

I guess it's tough not being in the spotlight. Sounds like Malik is tasting some sour grapes these days.

Guess he had his Haterade today.

Wayne Hicks said...

Reggie - That was my take on his comments.

Who are the four Black male actors that you would chisel on Mt. Rushmore if you had a chance?

Me? Denzel and Sidney are two. I need some help thinking about who else would be up there.

Renee said...

Though Malik currently has a show on syfy the man is high on himself and always has been if you ask me. Denzel has won two Oscars to Malik's how many? Yeah, I think that says it all.

Reggie said...

Those were the first two that came to mind to me as well Wayne. I think that the book might be out on the rest. There have been some very good men of color that have been actors, but how many that have been showcased the way those two have been.

Although he's not up there yet, Jamie Foxx is a wonderfully talented actor. Samuel Jackson is good, but he's mpt up there either. Will Smith has the box office numbers, but he's a movie star, not an actor. I would have never thought that ten years ago.

I think that only time will tell about the other two.

Daddy Squeeze Me! said...

I am just wondering where he gets off with the criticism when we are blessed to even have hollywood even give some damn body black a role....and not just any, a leading one!

Wayne Hicks said...

Renee and Daddy Squeeze Me - I agree with you both! I think that Malik must have some personal issues with Denzel ... and his issues were exposed to the public with this interview.

On another note ... which 4 actors would you each place on your version of the Mt. Rushmore for Black male actors? Would Denzel make the cut?

Wayne Hicks said...

Reggie - Will Smith is "a movie star, not an actor" ... that's cold! :)

Iya said...

Samuel Jackson, Idris Elba

Iya said...

How could I have forgotten Sidney Poitier!!

Aaron Laramore said...

I think Malik is lame for criticizing Denzel's work in this way. It is a total feat when an actor completely disappears into his character. Jaime Foxx in Ray is a great example. I didn't see Jaime, I saw Ray Charles. But I think its a bit of a lame critique given that most actors of substantial fame don't disappear into the character in this way, which is also a function of the underlying source material. In fact, for many megastars of Denzel's caliber, part of what we we enjoy so much is watching "them" be a character. I would argue to anyone that Denzel's appeal is as much about who he is informing the character as much as it is about seeing him interpret the character.

He didn't have to bring Denzel down in order to elevate yourself. Just not a classy comment and frankly a little foolish from a brand standpoint. Denzel's brand with black folk is solid gold pretty much and we the same audience Malik wants to be beloved by as well. We think Denzel is a damn fine actor and its not particularly smart of Yoba to tell the rest of us we are wrong in that opinion.

Wayne Hicks said...

Iya - Idris Elba is a British actor ... it is sorta sad that we can't figure out four Black male actors from America to place on our mythical Mt. Rushmore. Even your choice of Samuel L. Jackson made me do some thinking. Has he ever been the LEAD ACTOR in a meaningful or memorable movie?

Aaron - I agree with everything you said ... and I appreciate your visit to our blog!