NAACP Image Award winning Actress Nia Long (Love Jones, Soul Food, Best Man, Uncle Buck) sat down with Larry King during an episode of the web series Larry King Now and shared her opinion on everything from racial and gender inequality to aging in Hollywood.  Check out the entire interview below.

On racial/gender inequality in Hollywood…

“I think it’s an old conversation.  It’s a topic that hasn’t changed.  It saddens me because we aren’t in a place where we can just make good art.  We aren’t in a place where I can be cast as just a leading woman where the character description doesn’t have to say “African American” or “black.”  We are still afraid.  Nothing good ever comes from separatism.  When you start to separate culture between projects and movies, you automatically create a space to be judged, and to me that is fear based.”

On aging in Hollywood…

“Here’s the thing, I’m 45, I’m black, and I’m a woman. So those are three really hard things to deal with…except I’m always working, but I work really hard to get — sometimes — crumbs.  I feel blessed and lucky to have the career that I have, but there are times I’ve been beat up in this business. It hasn’t been just roses and fairy tales. It’s been a tough road and you have to stick to what you believe in, you have to be strong, you have to be able to say no, and I cannot afford to operate out of fear.”

On the Oscar boycott…

“I love Jada Pinkett Smith.  I’ve known her for years.  I think that what she said was a wake-up call for everyone.  I don’t think she was trying to make a statement nor do I think that she was being a disgruntled actor because her husband didn’t get a nomination.  I think she was expressing her opinion about something.  She left it free for people to take the opinion that they wanted to take.  Personally, I don’t think boycotting the Oscars is going to solve anything because we should celebrate all actors and all good work.  I do think that Hollywood needs to wake up and acknowledge that there are far fewer opportunities for black people, and minorities in this business.  I do think that we need to realize that there is a huge pay difference between men and women, and I think that Patricia Arquette said it best in her Oscar speech….”




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The HBR Media Team is a collective group of black women filmmakers, writers, and studio/network executives who are passionate about bringing visibility to women of African descent working in film and television.

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