The Winnie Mandela biopic hits screens on Friday with Jennifer Hudson and Terrence Howard as the iconic South African couple. It’s but one of two films about Nelson Mandela, as Idris Elba will star as the South African icon in the second pic “Long Walk to Freedom.” In the trailers, “Long Walk to Freedom” with Elba as Mandela and British actress Noemie Harris of James Bond fame as Winnie, emerges as the favorite, but seeing Oscar nominee Howard and Oscar winner Hudson in roles well out of their comfort zone could be interesting.
But “Winnie Mandela” hasn’t come without its share of controversy. Although directed by South African director Darrell Roodt, the American cast was criticized by the Creative Workers Union, the Screen Actors Guild of South Africa, and Mandela herself reportedly objected to her depiction. Hudson says the film did take time to reach audiences.
“It was done almost three years ago actually,” Hudson told the Tom Joyner Morning Show. It was originally an independent film and also an international film so it takes a while to get distribution. T.D. Jakes picked it up so we’re grateful for that.” Hudson, an Oscar winner for “Dreamgirls” says that the challenge of playing Mandela forced her to make some changes.
“That’s what started the whole weight loss originally because I had to lose weight for the role and also getting down the accent. So they had me lose weight and work on the accent as well. “ Hudson would famously lose almost 80 pounds, getting a deal with Weight Watchers in the process. Though starring in the film, Hudson never got a chance to study her famous subject.
“I still haven’t had the opportunity to meet her, but hopefully this opens up a door where I can be able to meet her,” Hudson says. She too, has heard that Mandela was not happy with the movie, although Mandela never publicly criticized the actors, just the movie itself. “I’ve heard that in the wind definitely, but hopefully she sees it and she likes it .”
As for working with Howard, Hudson says he’s a Method actor, who remained in character throughout their shoot. Howard is in three films this season including “The Butler” and “The Best Man: Holiday.”
Hudson will be onscreen again this year in “Black Nativity,” also produced by Jakes. She has high praise for Howard as an actor, but is also not surprised he stays in the news.
“Terence is just an amazing actor. He was always in character all day everyday . He would come to me as Nelson and I was always Winnie on and off set. He’s always raising the bar so that was a great partner to be teamed up with. I’m not surprised[ that he keeps making headlines.] I’ll say that and I’m going to shut up. He’s an interesting individual.” “Winnie Mandela” is in theaters this Friday.
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This Week’s Celebrity Instagrams (11/26-12/2)
30 photos Launch gallery
1. Little Legend and Puddy 😍😍😍😍
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2. "You on point Phife?" "all the time,Tip". 💥 #bannedfromnormal
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3. Vegan! The Impossible burger at Crossroads
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4. Lawrence #BeforeandAfterEpisodes 1-4: 184lbs 13% body fatEpisode 8: 196lbs 8% body fat S/O @coachdaveboxing with the works outs and @kildareriordan with the nutrition
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5. Jus haaaanngin out
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6. Meanwhile back at home in Atlanta GA someone mad they not on the 🛳. 😳
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7. No limits... Photo cred: Chris Bridges @ludacris
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8. new new
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9. Apparently my 260lbs is too much for the actual vines in the Hawaiian jungles to hold me without breaking and me falling hundreds of feet. So for safety purposes, I'm forced to swing thru #Jumanjj on wires strong enough to hold 12 adult buffaloes and 1 adult Rock. #OnSet #Jumanji #IronicallyIEatBuffaloDailyForLunch #MoreManThanNatureKnowsWhatToDoWith
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10. hey ma! 🎎#wcw 💙
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11. Surprise visit to our factories!!! #GoodAmerican #USA
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13. Peachy Keen 🔥✨⚡️
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14. If this don't look thankful I don't know what does. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours. #UltraBlessed #24kMagic #SweetPotatoFly
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15. Late nights @nbcmarlon with the writers... we in here!!!
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16. There goes my baaaaaaaaabbbbyyyyy #QueenKingMagic!!! We're up to something! Ira BIG!!! Stay out our buisness -
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17. You want to win every game you play but when you come home to these faces... who cares. #ILoveYouGirls best part of my day, everyday!
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18. Steady,steady..... full size jenga.. "I got this one "???? Or do I ?
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19. Cornrows kind of day 😉@dontaysavoy2 you convinced me and I love. ❤️️
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20. #BrotherlyLove #tbt
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22. #basel #TeamLOVE @kingcombs
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23. Just introduced a special screening of @directher 's groundbreaking (must see) documentary @13thfilm with my brother @themichaelealy | @unitedblackout #blackoutblackfriday
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24. Me & Vanessa Williams giving #DuckLips #Pose on the set of #DaytimeDivas @vh1 - Coming Soon to a tv near you. Lol. - My make up done by @makeupsurgeon
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25. This picture just makes me wanna praise the Lord, you hear me!!!!!! Yes Lord brotha #TEDDYCAMPBELL What a #man !!! You are everything right on this picture husband ......... #gorgeous #stylish #classy #strong #masculine #king #sexy #debonair #gentlemenstyle And that #bible in your hand just seals the deal for me (probably cause i know that, that is what helped you become just as amazing as you look😘). While my heart and mind experiences the goodness of God at #church on Sundays, my eyes experiences the goodness of Teddy😍. Amen somebody🙌🏽. "Bless the Lord oh my soul and all that is within me bless his holy name" #myman #myhusband #goodman #blackman #dapperman #godlyman #goodfather #mybestfriend
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26. Yesterday was my mama's 53rd birthday!!!!! Got to celebrate with her all day. If this is what I have to look forward to I can't wait. Looking like a soft bucket a cocoa butter. Yaaaaaaaaaas! 😍😍😍 love you mommy!
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27. "Shout out to @PureAtlanta for getting the family right"....I'm loving this jogger. 😍😍
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28. This pic warms my heart ❤️ #myLogiebeans and aunt aunt umba @itowandabraxton 😘
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29. You will always be my baby😜. #HappyBirthdayReginae #mybaby18
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30. GC "Gods Child" Red on Red SweatSuit available now at www.MonicaApparel.com ... Take Your Crown wherever you go!! I'm pictured in a Medium... Go to the site now for other options ... cc: @trukernell
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