On Sunday night, Daniel Kaluuya took home the Academy Award for Best Supporting Actor for his portrayal of Black Panther Party Chicago Chairman Fred Hampton in the Shaka King-directed film Judas and the Black Messiah.
The moment, while both joyous and hilariously bizarre (thanks largely in part to that one acknowledgement in his acceptance speech) presented a great opportunity for members of the press to ask further questions about the film, the all-Black production team behind it, or perhaps even the alleged history-making moment of Daniel’s achievement (There’s talk that he may be the U.K.’s first non-white actor to ever win.)
But apparently, South African journalist and alleged HFPA member Margaret Gardiner wanted to stand out from the crowd and decided to take a different approach—and my oh my, what an approach it was.
Deadline reports that Gardiner, who was apparently there on behalf of The Sunday Times of South Africa, took the opportunity to remotely ask Daniel about his time working with Regina King on the film and what his win meant for “the community.”
Rightfully incredulous at the question but still displaying a more than gracious level of decorum, Kaluuya responded with a short and sweet answer—but not before giving us yet another meme-worthy moment with his reaction.
I don’t know who needs to hear this but Daniel Kaluuya,—you know, the guy with the shiny gold statuette in his hand, didn’t work with Regina King. It was Shaka King. Leslie Odom Jr., who also happened to be nominated that night but did not win, was the one who worked with Regina. How you confuse the two is beyond me but apparently after this clip went viral, Gardiner hopped on Twitter to clarify her mistake.
https://thegrapevine.theroot.com/embed/inset/iframe?id=twitter-1386757889994334210&autosize=1 “#DanielKaluuya I did not mistake you for Leslie Odom Jnr,” Gardiner wrote in a tweet. “I’m sorry if it seemed that way. I had wanted to ask about Regina King not being nominated as a director for One Night in Miami, and your win for Judas and the Black Messiah for the community at this time.”
She added, “2. (cont) #DanielKaluuya There was a sound issue so I dropped the part about Regina King and restated my question. What does it mean for the community at this time. When I [listened] to the audio, I do understand, but there was no confusion. This is my last tweet on my mistake. I apologize to Daniel Kaluuya for my words. I apologize to anyone else who was offended by them.”
First of all, “to anyone else who was offended” is a whack way to skirt around a true apology. Second, in addition to confusing these two actors, asking a singular Black person to speak on something “on behalf of the community” is lazy, played out, and equally offensive. Third, I have nothing else to add here because I think Daniel’s face really does say it all.
- The Root