Sylvester Stallone Sought Creed Director Ryan Coogler’s Advice About Boycotting the Oscars
Sylvester Stallone: apparently a pretty good guy. When news broke that his Best Supporting Actor nomination was the only nomination Creed received, he had more than a few understandably mixed feelings. He wanted to boycott the event, but before stepping out, he did what he thought was best: he sought advice from Creed‘s director, Ryan Coogler.
Apparently Coogler told him he should go, despite his objections. At the Academy Award nominee luncheon, Stallone said:
I said, ‘Ryan, how do you want to handle this? Because I really believe that you are responsible for me being here. Michael Jordan, every time I look in his eyes as an actor, he’s making me better. I think he should’ve been given a lot more respect, a lot more attention.
To which Coogler replied (according to Stallone):
He goes, ‘Sly, just go there. Try to represent the film. … We feel you deserve it.
Stallone went on to explain his position, saying, “I said, ‘If you want me to go, I’ll go. If you don’t, I won’t. And he goes, ‘No, we want you to go.’ That’s the kind of guy he is. ‘We want you to go and respect us and stand up for the film.’”
It’s good to see Stallone’s got his heart in the right place. While a boycott would have been an incredibly strong statement on his part, perhaps his presence there would allow him to advocate on behalf of the talented people who were essentially denied representation in most categories.
I know, I know, it’s really squick-inducing to think that a person who isn’t black has to be the voice for the black people they know and worked with. I’m not saying this is progress by any means, I’m just recognizing that Stallone seems to be doing his best to try to provide recognition where it’s due. However, the question still remains: will the Academy be listening? Will Hollywood be listening?
If the events of the past few weeks are any indication, it doesn’t seem likely. Stallone’s also conscious of this fact, and weighed in with his own opinion about the controversy. He said:
Certainly, there’s the universal law of existence: You either adapt or cease to exist. So I think adaptation and evolving is definitely necessary.
I do believe that things will change in just a matter of time. Eventually, all talent will rise to the top, it’s just a matter of getting a new paradigm, a new way of thinking. It’s gonna happen, but I really do owe everything to these two young men, for sure.
Here’s hoping that the “matter of time” he speaks of is shorter than we think.
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