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Sunday 24 September 2017

Director hurt at Oyelowo Oscar snub

David Oyelowo during the press conference for the film Selma at the 2015 Berlinale Film Festival (AP)
David Oyelowo during the press conference for the film Selma at the 2015 Berlinale Film Festival (AP)

Selma director Ava DuVernay has spoken of her disappointment that British star David Oyelowo's performance as Martin Luther King failed to gain an Oscar nomination

"I was hurt by the fact that David wasn't nominated because I know what it took to get that performance," she said at the film's premiere in Berlin.

"I don't need anyone to tell me that it's one of the best performances of 2014; no one needs to even say that to me because I already know."

Besides best picture, Selma is also nominated in the original song category for Glory, by Common and John Legend.

"It's a song that is going to be in the culture for quite a while," DuVernay said. "Already choirs and students and people are singing this song and it's becoming a protest that I think will last."

She said she was not expecting a best-director bid from the film academy. "There has been no precedent for a black woman to be nominated for best director, so why was it going to change with me?" she said.

Yet the director said she feels honoured the film is a contender for the top Oscar.

"We were nominated as best picture, which is nothing to sneeze at," she said. "People act like we dragged out of there with nothing. I mean, best picture."

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