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Denzel Washington Recalls N-Word Insults; Fans Make Push for Actor as First Black James Bond

Denzel Washington talks racism in Boston

Credit: Sony Pictures

The conversation at the press conference for Denzel Washington’s new movie Equalizer took an interesting turn when the veteran actor recalled his run-in with the n-word while in Boston more than 30 years ago.

Meanwhile, fans of the 59-year-old actor took to Twitter to push for Washington to become the first Black James Bond.

Racism wasn’t the topic of discussion at the Toronto Film Festival on Sunday, but a question about filming Equalizer in Boston caused the conversation to take an unexpected turn.

Washington was joined by co-stars Chloe Grace Moretz and Marton Csokas as well as the film’s director, Antoine Fuqua.

While everyone discussed the challenges of shooting on the first day, it was Washington who opened up about a personal experience with racism when he was in Boston years ago.

Washington recalled the time he went to Boston with his wife, Pauletta, so he could see her perform in a play.

When they arrived at their hotel, however, people assumed Washington was a pimp and that his wife was actually his prostitute.

According to the Flight actor, a fight broke out and security had to be called.

“I didn’t know how to fight,” Washington said. “But I knew how to win.”

Unfortunately, the trouble didn’t stop there.

One night, he decided to walk to his wife’s show only to be verbally attacked by a stranger.

“ ‘Hey n****r, n****r, n****r, n****r, hey boy.’ I was like, ‘Damn,’ ” Washington recalled. “That was the taste I had about Boston.”

During Sunday’s conference, he also discussed rough experiences with directors and how he has never been in a movie where he wasn’t nervous during the first day of shooting.

Throughout the press conference, Washington displayed an intriguing sense of calm as he discussed painful memories of racism. That cool, collected persona could possibly earn him a role as the first Black James Bond.

#DenzelIsJamesBond launched on Twitter

Source: Twitter

At least, his fans hope it will.

The Oscar-winning actor took part in Reddit’s “Ask Me Anything” chat and was posed with an interesting question.

“Would you be interested in being the next James Bond,” one user asked.

Washington not only admitted that he would be interested in the part, but he showed quite a bit of excitement over the idea of having such a role.

“The next James Bond,” Washington asked. “Yes I would! Who’s doing James Bond now – Daniel Craig!”

He then put the powers of social media to the test.

“Everybody should tweet Denzel is James Bond,” he added. “We start the Denzel is Bond campaign today!”

Of course, it’s impossible to tell whether the actor was joking around or not, but his fans certainly took the message to heart.

#DenzelIsJamesBond did manage to start circulating on Twitter, although it certainly did not become the giant Web phenomenon that would really encourage filmmakers to give the fans what they wanted.


What people are saying

7 thoughts on “Denzel Washington Recalls N-Word Insults; Fans Make Push for Actor as First Black James Bond

  1. I cannot figure this one out, but why do black movies goers (no me) are always pushing for blacks to play white characters? Like a black is going to play cinderella are you kidding me? White folks are laughing thier butts off, and at the same time getting a boost for their self esteem. Oh yea they have self esteem problems, it is pretty bad, and black folks help them, better than their doctors. Denzel please don't play a James Bond, you are more manly than him anyway, besides all the other stuff. I am wating on the movie, Toussaint L'Overture. I have gotten one buzz word on it, Denzel you are the one for that movie. That will be the movie of a lifetime for me.

  2. Olive Greenz says:

    Two things. James Bond (in the books) could pretend to be American, British, Estonion, Russian, German, French, etc. He was a Western SPY. I don't think Denzel, who is a super actor ,can play all those parts. Not for that era.
    Second thing, regarding racism. Yes, Denzel, it is awful. When I was a skinny little teenage girl my family had to live in Navy housing in the middle of a black neighborhood in Oakland. Walking to and from school was a constant nightmare because I would be attacked by black girls. For no reason except I am white. When I was an adult and got a job teaching computer programs in Fairfield, California an older black teacher who taught in a completely different dept. than I, went to the Principal and told her I was a racist because I wasn't 'friendly' with her. I was brand new, she was in a different dept., I didn't want to be pushy and she and I hadn't been introduced. When I was called to the Counselor's office to explain myself, I asked the counselor if my son-in-law and my grandchildren could come to the school and let her know what kind of person I am. What if I didn't have a mixed race family? I could have lost my job and never gotten another one. Yep, racism is a b___ch. Stop it everyone. Denzel, I would like an apology from someone! They have nothing to do with me but I apologize to you for the horrible, nasty white people that were rude. How someone acts reflects on the people that raised them.

  3. Olive Greenz says:

    Any black (African-Americans, whatever) or white, or Asian producers feel like making a movie about an incredible black woman? Harriet Tubman. My hero. No matter what 'race' one is how can anyone not wish they could have met her and tell her that her name means honor and bravery and love.

  4. Olive Greenz Get it right now. The French made Haiti pay them reparations, it took Haiti over a hundred years to pay them, they put sanctions on Haiti that lasted over a hundred years, some of the sanctions may still be running. The millions and millions of dollars Haiti paid in reparations, and sanctions caused Haite to almost die. All this was headed by the US, France, and all their allies, because Toussaint kicked France, Spain, and Britian out of Haiti, and they are still mad, because the Haitians refused to be their slaves.

  5. Why must African Americans always play people who are oppressed? Nzingha. I would love to see Denzel play a person who gets the bad guy like James Bond. I need a movie in which there is a normal family, who happens to be African American, working, not collecting welfare, or being shot at, going on a nice vacation or something like that. You know, what they have white people do. in real life, not all African American live in the Ghettos, working two bit jobs, that barely pay a dime, with a single mother trying to get a welfare check. I enjoyed seeing Why did I get Married or Think like a Man and their sequels. I enjoy feel good movies that have AA actors doing good things, and having a normal life with all the thugisms and gang related stuff. I rather see that, than Haiti.

  6. Tricia Lynn Logan What happened in Haiti will show us the determination of a people who did not allow whites to hold them in slavery. They had no weapons, just a strong determination, it goes to show when we are determined what we can do. Today, do we need determination? Yes in deed, if we don't become determined to correct what is going on in the black race we are not going to survive. Every black movie I have seen, if there is not out right abuse showing blacks in the negative, there will be subliminal messages. Hollywood plays a major role keeping white supremacy alive.

  7. Ronald Tima says:

    Tricia Lynn Logan I don't think you know anything about Black history in General. May be you don't even know where you came from. Did you know it was the Haitian that helped USA to take independence? Do you know the founder of Chicago? Do some little research at least.

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