Djimon Hounsou’s acting career spans 33 years and includes two Academy Award nominations (“In America” and “Blood Diamond”), action blockbusters such as “Furious 7”, “Shazam!” superhero movies like and collaborations with Steven Spielberg (“Amistad”) and Ridley Scott (“Gladiator”), yet he told Guardian He still feels “tremendously duped” when it comes to Hollywood pay.
“I’m still struggling trying to make a dollar!” Hounsou said. “I’ve come across some people in business who are downright rich and I have very little to admire. So I feel cheated in terms of finances and also in terms of work load.
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“I’ve gone to the studio for meetings and they’re like: ‘Wow, we felt like you went off the boat and then went right back (after ‘Amistad’). We didn’t know you were a true actor here. are in form,” Hounsou continued. “When you hear things like this, you can see that some people’s view of you, or what you represent, is very limited. But it is what it is. It’s up to me to capitalize on it.
“I still have to prove why I need to be paid,” he said. “They always come to me with a complete low ball: ‘We only have so much for the role, but we love you so much and we really think you can bring so much’ … Film Film after film, it’s a struggle. I am yet to get a film that has paid me appropriately.
Hounsou said Hollywood ignored him from the start, starting with his breakthrough role as a rebellious slave man in Spielberg’s “Amistad”. Despite earning universal acclaim, it was her co-star Anthony Hopkins who received the film’s only Oscar nomination. As with 2016’s “Blood Diamond”, the Academy nominated Hounsou for supporting actor and his co-star Leonardo DiCaprio for lead actor, despite the film focusing equally on Hounsou’s character.
Hounsou said, “I feel seriously cheated.” Guardian, “Today, we talk a lot about the Oscars being so white, but I remember there was a time when I had no support at all: no support from my people, no support from the media, no support from the industry itself. It felt like: ‘You should be happy you’ve been nominated,’ and that’s it.
Hounsou is now back in theaters as a magician in Warner Bros. “Shazam!: The Fury of the Gods.” This is a supporting role that is greatly expanded upon compared to the limited screen time he received in the first “Shazam!” film.
“Out of all of them, the DC universe has a level of respect,” Hounsou said. “There wasn’t much to the role the first time, and I did it and it was fun. But the second time it was a little more respectable.
“From time to time, (Hollywood) itself makes a point of saying: ‘We should give her more, she’s under-appreciated.’ I think they themselves recognize it,” Hounsou concluded. “Hey, that’s the struggle I have to overcome!”
“Shazam! Fury of the Gods” is now playing in theaters nationwide.
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