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"Winnie" Director On Why Winnie Mandela Wasn't Consulted For Biopic, Casting Jennifer Hudson + More

Photo of Tambay A. Obenson By Tambay A. Obenson | Shadow and Act September 26, 2011 at 11:31AM

Nice lengthy interview from Blackfilm.com with Darrell Roodt, director of Winnie, the much-discussed, though not well-received (thus far) biopic on the life of Winnie Mandela, starring Jennifer Hudson and Terrence Howard.
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Nice lengthy interview from Blackfilm.com with Darrell Roodt, director of Winnie, the much-discussed, though not well-received (thus far) biopic on the life of Winnie Mandela, starring Jennifer Hudson and Terrence Howard.

The interview took place at TIFF, where the film screened earlier this month.

In it, Roodt answers questions that many of us have wondered on this site, notably, why the real Winnie Mandela wasn't consulted in the making of the film, as well as why J-Hud and Terrence Howard were cast in their respective roles.

Here's a snip:

On why Winnie wasn't consulted, Root says:

I thought it was a prudent thing to do and the producer said not. He said, “If you get her endorsement, then you’re dead in the water because there’s a perception of Winnie.” So he constantly said, “It’s not a film for Winnie. It’s a film about Winnie.” Ultimately is it for her or not? That’s up to the audience to decide... It was a tricky thing to do because there was nothing more that I wanted. It would’ve been amazing if I in preproduction could have gotten those two together in a room, Winnie and Jennifer. Jennifer would have certainly been inspired. However, she might have been too inspired by her and sometimes it’s not best to meet the person that you’re going to bring to life.

And on why Jennifer and Terrence were cast:

I aimed at them both straightaway. I went to both of them and that’s a true story. They didn’t go through the casting roster and say, “Who do you want?” I said I wanted Jennifer Hudson and I wanted Terrence Howard. And Andre [Pieterse], the good producer that he is, got them for me. We only had a limited budget so we could only pay them a little amount but they came to do it.

So, there ya have it. Reactions? I know a lot of you took issue with the fact that Winnie wasn't consulted for the film. Are you ok with his reasons for why they didn't consult her?

No distribution prospects for the film yet.

Head over to Blackfilm.com for the full interview HERE.

This article is related to: Things That Make You Go Hmm...


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