It has been 10 years since Eddie Murphy’s stellar performance in Dreamgirls landed him a Golden Globe, SAG and Critics’ Choice award.
That year, Murphy’s role as Jimmy Early in the film was said to be an obvious pick for an Oscar for best supporting actor. Remarkably, he lost to Alan Arkin’s performance in Little Miss Sunshine.
But Murphy, now 55-years-old, remains hopeful and he’s willing to wait for as long as it takes to be awarded the coveted title of Academy winner.
“I’m gonna be around for a while and if I don’t get it then eventually, when I’m 90 — what’s the one they give you just because you’ve been in the business so long? [An honorary Oscar.] Eventually they’re gonna have to give me that shit,” he says adamantly.
As the self-proclaimed, “first black actor to take charge in a white world onscreen,” Murphy made a splash since his ’80s debut on uncut, unfiltered and raw comedy stand-ups.
As a 30-year-veteran in the industry, he has managed to transcend his raw and uncut persona to become a household name with notable films like Nutty Professor (1996), Doctor Dolittle (1998), Shrek (2001) and Daddy Day Care (2003).
“I already did 35 years in movies, eventually y’all gonna have to give me something. And if y’all wait til I’m 85, 90, I’m gonna come out a 90-year-old dude, in a sky-blue tuxedo — there’s a reason why it’s sky blue — and I’m gonna walk out and when they give me the award and they hand it to me, I’m just gonna stand there and urinate on myself in front of the world — the whole world — and just stand there. And then they’re gonna have to play that music and then they’ll have to usher me off. That’s gonna be my moment. Don’t make me wait!”
This is a much different Murphy than we’ve seen in the past. At the 1988 Academy award ceremony, Murphy said, “Black people will not ride the caboose of society, and we will not bring up the rear anymore, and I want you to recognize us.”
Murphy is making his return to the big screen in an unlikely role for the actor — an indie drama. In Mr. Church, Murphy plays a black man raising a white child after her mother dies. Already reviewed as one of Murphy’s best performances yet, could this be the role that finally earns Murphy the Oscar he wants?
Only time will tell.
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