By Jai Tiggett | Shadow and Act February 21, 2013 at 8:51PM
As the Academy Awards approach this weekend, celebrations are in full swing. On Tuesday producer Reginald Hudlin was honored at a dinner hosted by Bevy Smith recognizing his Best Picture nomination for Django Unchained.
Find photos and details on the event via the press release below. You can also see Hudlin's thoughts on his nomination in Masha's recent interview HERE.
Tuesday Hollywood insiders attended a Dinner With Bevy in conjunction with The Blackhouse Foundation and sponsored by Sprite in honor of Django Unchained producer, Reginald Hudlin’s Best Picture Academy Award nomination.
The event was held at famed talent agency, CAA and was attended by celebrities including rapper/actor, Common, actors, Sanaa Lathan, James Remar, Alfre Woodward, Brandon T. Jackson, Anika Noni Rose, Walton Goggins, Yvette Nicole Brown, Terry Crews, Jordin Sparks and John Witherspoon. The room was filled with an abundance of Hollywood insiders including Hudlin’s television mentor, writer/producer Steven Bochco, producer of the upcoming Star Wars, Episode VII, JJ Abrams, Dana Walden, chairman of 20th Century Fox, Django soundtrack collaborator Rza, film and tv producer, Suzanne dePasse, Access Hollywood’s Shaun Robinson, and Hudlin’s “Django Unchained” co-producers, Pilar Savone and Stacy Sher.
The room resplendent in citrus hues of yellow and green floral arrangements paid homage to Sprite’s signature, lemon and lime flavor. In keeping with the fresh yet bold atmosphere of the evening, CORZO tequila created the “Sprite Unchained” a mix of CORZO silver tequila, club soda, Sprite, grapefruit juice with a lime zest float. The guests dined on artisanal bread, Malibu field greens, and Chilean Sea Bass with a dark chocolate entremet for dessert.
The event was filled with love and praise for not only Hudlin’s Oscar nomination, but also his body of work. Host, Bevy Smith spoke about how Hudlin’s films inspired her life, Smith said “before I saw House Party I was obsessed with John Hughes films, imagining myself as a mocha Molly Ringwald. Then I saw House Party and knew I was Tisha Campbell, AJ Johnson”. When Smith mentioned Hudlin’s integrity in a business not know for that trait, fashion doyenne Bethann Hardison shouted “that’s because he’s from New York”. Later in the evening New York entertainment impresario, Andre Harrell stopped by for dessert.
Brickson Diamond, Board Chair of the Blackhouse Foundation in his opening remarks explained why they decided to honor Hudlin. "Blackhouse is about helping black filmmakers get their work onto the screens at the major film festivals, but we want more than that. We want them to cultivate thriving careers like that of our amazing honoree, Reginald Hudlin. He's been termed the modern day Gordon Parks and we are so proud of his work across film, television and animation. He is a true beacon."
Hudlin expressed his joy at having so many people in one room that he’s worked with over several decades. Actor, Terry Crews who Hudlin has cast in various roles credited him with starting him on his career. “Reggie is the person who convinced me I should act and he’s always telling people to hire me”. Hudlin chuckled as he explained “whenever I try to tell people about Terry, once they meet him they tell me I didn’t adequately describe his talent, then they try to tell me, the person who introduced them to Terry how great he is.”. Suzanne dePasse, an Oscar nominee in her own right mentioned that she was so proud of all that Reggie had accomplished, especially his nomination. dePasse said “As one of the few Blacks to be nominated for an Oscar (Lady Sings The Blues, screenwriter) for behind the camera work, I thought it was important to come out and celebrate Reginald”.
With a mix of young Hollywood meeting the more established leaders, it was an evening filled with connections being made. Brandon T.Jackson insisted on meeting Sanaa Lathan. Everyone’s favorite film mom, Alfre Woodward chatted with Jordin Sparks, Anika Noni Rose and Common. Terry Crews and Brandon T.Jackson kicked back after dinner and regaled Jordin Sparks with funny stories.
It was a magical night, not only for Reginald Hudlin but also for the guests in the room. Hudlin is only the FOURTH African American to be nominated in the “Best Picture” category, so it’s evident that there are still milestones to be made by African Americans in the film community, therefore Hudlin’s nomination is a win in itself. However, Hudlin isn’t resting on his laurels with several projects in various stages of development, he told host, Bevy Smith “get ready, this is just the beginning”.