Daniel Kaluuya tried to hide his confusion after a reporter asked him a bizarre question following his Oscars win yesterday.
Not only that, but the same reporter confused the British and Ugandan actor for One Night in Miami star Leslie Odom Jr.
Kaluuya, 32, won the Best Supporting Actor award for his portrayal of Black Panther Party Chairman Fred Hampton in the drama Judas and the Black Messiah. But just minutes later, in the backstage press room, celebrations were turned to confusion by one reporter.
“I want to congratulate you on this. I’ve been following you since the beginning of your career,” Hollywood Foreign Press Association reporter Margaret Gardiner asked.
“I was wondering what it meant to you to be directed by Regina [King]. And what this means for you, at this time, with the world in the state that it’s in?”
For the purpose of clarifying, Kaluuya was not in the Regina King-directed movie, One Night in Miami but Odom Jr was. In fact, he was also nominated in the same Best Supporting Actor category as Kaluuya for his portrayal of legendary musician Sam Cook.
Gardiner’s question stumped Kaluuya, who asked her to repeat it.
“Say, that question again, please?” he politely asked.
This time, however, Gardiner dropped the Regina King part of the question and went with: “I was wondering what it meant for you to win with the world in the state that it’s in at the moment?”
Kaluuya still looked confused so he kept his answer short and to the point.
“It’s amazing to have this honour and be appreciated in this way,” he replied, but Gardiner wanted more, asking this follow-up: “Does it mean more for the community, though?”
“What means something to the community is people pouring into each other, protecting each other, defending each other, and guiding each other,” said before his facial expressions turned into disbelief. “That’s what means everything to the community.”
Gardiner has since defended her apparent Oscars gaffe, claiming on Twitter she did not get Kaluuya and Odom Jr confused.
“I’m sorry but I didn’t mistake Daniel, I wanted to ask about how he felt winning at the most represented Oscars yet Regina King not being nominated for One Night in Miami,” she tweeted.
“The sound was problematic, so I dropped the Regina King part & asked what it meant to win at this time.”
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