Mo’Nique Dares Lee Daniels To A Public Sit Down | Chocolate Informed
According to Uptoown
Lee Daniels denied that Mo’Nique had ever been offered the leading role of Cookie on the show, as she had claimed. The comedienne stood by her statements when asked about his remarks.
Mo’Nique has recently re-entered the spotlight after she revealed that director Lee Daniels told her she had been blackballed in Hollywood. Back in 2009, when she won an Oscar for her role in Daniels’ film Precious no one could have guessed that her name would have faded. However, Daniels said in an interview with CNN’s Don Lemon that Mo’Nique had been shut out because she didn’t play the game and claimed that she made “unreasonable demands.”
Mo’Nique decided to set the record straight on her relationship with Daniels and beingblackballed, in an exclusive interview with Hello Beautiful. Part of that includes a desire to have a public sit down with Daniels.
I no longer have Lee’s phone number but would love to have a conversation with my brother, but we would have to do it publicly because the ones we’ve had privately –when you then speak about them — you don’t tell what the real conversation was. When a person is saying, I want to do it publicly, does it sound like a person who has something to hide? I don’t bind to the A-list, I don’t bind to the elite. I’m just a regular folk from Baltimore Maryland, who’s living out her dreams. I’m a wife and a mommy and having the time of her life. That can be for the other elite folk, I’m not that.
She also addressed Daniels’ accusations of making ridiculous demands.
“From the amazing journalists and reporters that have talked to [Lee Daniels] no one has yet to say ‘What were her demands?’ and what made her ‘difficult?’ No one asked him that question. Me and Lee Daniels — I know him. We’ve had conversations in the middle of the night. I know him. So when he says I’m difficult and demanding, when he makes that statement, me and that man ain’t never had a drop of an issue, not on Shadowboxer, not onPrecious. And, if I were those people, why ever would you call me for Empire? Why ever would you offer me the grandmother in Richard Pryor? Why? Cause Lee knows he and I never had any issues. I simply repeated what he said to me.”
Recently, Empire co-creator Danny Strong denied that Mo’Nique had ever been offered the leading role of Cookie on the show, as she had claimed. The comedienne stood by her statements when asked about his remarks.
“I tweeted him back. I understand why you would say that, however when you find out the truth, will you speak as loudly? I’ve never had any communication with Mr. Strong. I’ve never met Mr. Strong. Lee’s never mentioned Mr. Strong so I have no idea who Mr. Strong is. So if Lee is telling Mr. Strong, ‘No, I didn’t offer Mo’Nique those things…No I didn’t talk to Mo’Nique about that,’ then that’s Lee’s friend and his business partner so all he’s doing is standing up for his friend.
Me and my husband Sidney, we respect people like that. However, when you find out the truth will you speak as loudly? Then it will make you question your friendship to say, ‘Why would you let me go out into the world and say something that you knew wasn’t true?’”
Although Mo’Nique made it a point not speak ill of anyone the interviewer asked about, she did allow Daniels to bury himself.
When the director spoke with Lemon on CNN, he said, “I guess I’m a sellout then! Call it what it is.” When asked if she thinks Daniels is a sellout, Mo’Nique replied, “Remember when Maya Angelou said ‘When someone introduces themselves to you believe them?’ Those were his words. What I think is unimportant.’
She admitted that not following the unwritten protocol when she was nominated for her Oscar contributed to her being shut down from Hollywood, saying that the studios were simply unused to being told “no.” She explained that she declined invitations to go to some of the events because they were unpaid and would take time away from her family.
“This is my down time and I want to spend it with my family, so when you really tell the story, all the way through, folks are saying what was difficult and demanding cause any working woman, in this country, once you put in you 40, you put it in right? If they call you to come in on Saturday, do you want to be paid for that or is that just a good gesture? You just gon’ go on and give them your Saturday?”
She went on to say that she’s unafraid to say these things, partially because movies were never her dream. “Coming to Hollywood becoming an actress wasn’t what I came to do. I came to Hollywood to be a talk show host. becoming an actress just fell in my lap.”
Despite all the drama, Mo’Nique is still busy on the big screen. Her independent film Blackbird is due for limited release on April 24th. The film is about a young singer growing up in a Southern Baptist community who is struggling with his sexuality. She scoffs at the notion of the film being controversial.
“It’s funny we consider love controversial. And that’s how far we’ve gotten removed from treating one other good. Because ‘Blackbird’ is a beautiful love story. I think when we open our hearts and our minds, we walk away with this thing called ‘acceptance.’ And we stop saying we love our fellow-man and we begin to love our fellow-man.”