Jamie Foxx’s compelling performance in the 2019 drama Just Mercy earned him another award. This time, from the African-American Film Critics Association (AAFCA) Awards
The 52-year-old actor took on the role of Walter McMillian, a wrongfully convicted death row inmate who was condemned in Alabama for a murder he didn’t commit. Foxx accepted the Best Supporting Actor honor at the ceremony held in Los Angeles on Wednesday.
In his speech, the actor took the time to address the film’s main topic: racism. He expressed his hopes that the Warner Bros. drama changes the audience’s perception of “what a black man is.” See the film’s emotional trailer in the video linked below:
While on stage, he also shared his own experience with fame and racism. He recalled a time when used to do comedy in Chicago years back. The incident happened at a fancy hotel patronized by “a lot of white people.”
Wearing a hoodie, Foxx went on an elevator with female guests from the hotel who were obviously terrified of his presence.
“…when they saw me, they huddled into the corner. ‘Michelle, Michelle, get over here. Stacy, Stacy, get over here,’” he remembered the women saying as they tried to avoid him. “…one of the ladies had the courage to look past my hoodie and saw that it was me. She said, ‘It’s Jamie Foxx.’ Phew!”
While his comedic tone left the audience with a belly full of laughs, he made sure to point out that racism is alive and well in this day and age.