Regina King on Why She Was the ‘Perfect Candidate’ to Direct ‘One Night in Miami’ | PRO Video

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Oscar and Emmy winner talks about finding vulnerability in four iconic Black men and how John Singleton helped her on the path to becoming a director

There has been no stopping Regina King. After winning an Oscar for “If Beale Street Could Talk” and an Emmy for “Watchmen,” the actress has found herself back in contention for another Academy Award — this time for Best Director. At the 2020 Power Women Summit, King spoke with TheWrap’s Steve Pond for the Spotlight Conversation presented by Cadillac. King discussed her upcoming directorial debut “One Night In Miami,” which is based on Kemp Powers’ acclaimed play of the same name. Set in 1964, the film tells of a fictional encounter between Muhammad Ali — then known as Cassius Clay — Malcolm X, Sam Cooke and Jim Brown in a Miami hotel room after Ali’s first heavyweight title victory over Sonny Liston. With all four men still on the rise toward superstardom, they have a life-changing and intimate discussion about what it means to be famous Black men in a country that discriminates against them… and what they could do to change that. “There were so many things about [the screenplay] that spoke to me just as a Black woman… getting to see Black men have a private discussion publicly and to see men so layered,” King said. “Kemp Powers’ dialogue is so unfortunately prescient. The conversations that are happening in this film are happening in 1960, in 1950 and happening now.” Pond pointed out the irony that King, who vowed in her 2019 Golden Globe acceptance speech to ensure that “everything I produce is 50% women,” is making her feature debut on a film about four of the most famous Black men of the 20th century. But King noted that “One Night In Miami” is a story that depicts something modern masculinity doesn’t always allow: vulnerability. Watch Regina King’s full interview, above.


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