David Oyelowo has opened up about Will Smith’s slap at the 2022 Oscars, saying he fears it could affect Hollywood’s “constant push to be included”.

The Emmy-nominated actor has witnessed many dramatic Oscar scenes first-hand, including Selma’s cheers for Best Actor and Best Director, the start of the #OscarsSoWhite trend and the fortuitous announcement of La La Land as Best Picture of 2017, his reaction went viral.

However, events that came after Chris Rock joked Jada Pinkett Smith with “GI Jane,” had Oyelowo fear the negative impact it could have on diversity in the entertainment business. .

“The moment I slowly realized the nature of what had just happened on stage at the Dolby Theater, I was faced with the same increased anxiety that all Blacks feel when faces appear. on the news after a crime is reported, is a Black,” Oyelowo recently wrote in a column for The Hollywood Reporter.

He continued: “You find yourself thinking, ‘What does this mean for us? What does that mean for me? ‘

“As a black person in the public eye, you are constantly aware of the fact that your very existence is political. You are always in a position to be used as an example to perpetuate or break a stereotype. “

Oyelowo added: “It was a burden that I had to accept even though it was exhausting in nature.”

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He went on to describe a racially “coded” encounter with “an older white gentleman” at the Oscars post-party, who told him: “[Smith] should have been dragged out of there. ”

Oyelowo continued: “Don’t forget that there is an attitude exemplified by the man who approached me at the party afterwards.

“The gossipy posture and half-smile is a sign of what must not be allowed to creep into the aftermath of this incident,” he concluded. “This incident should not be the springboard for proxy debates in Hollywood circles about race, respect, and belonging. I urge good people with good intentions to continue to focus on building on the great achievements we have made recently.”

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