John Boyega Explains Screen Nation Awards Speech Urging Black Actors To Not “Complain” About Diversity (VIDEO)
John Boyega explained in a series of tweets that he didn’t mean to tell fellow black actors at Saturday’s Screen Nation Film And Television Awards in London to stop complaining about diversity. While accepting the best male actor trophy at the awards show, which honors black actors in the U.K., Boyega controversially said to the crowd, “To complain about what is going on is not going to benefit us.” He added, “Be the change you want to be. Be the change, and continue and focus.” See the video below.
After Boyega’s eyebrow-raising remark was shared and criticized online, the Star Wars: The Force Awakens star explained in a series of tweets that he was simply saying it’s all right to complain, but one must also do something about the problem. Boyega wrote on Twitter, “Regarding my comments at the screen nation awards (just to clarify) I am not saying that complaints are invalid or should not be heard.” He added, “I am saying that words without action can’t help right now. I agree that we need to be heard but some do the talking and no work.” Boyega reiterated in a third tweet, “I didn’t clarify. I was full of emotion receiving the award and just wanted to say that there was work to be done.”
Check out the video below of Boyega’s acceptance speech in which he said to other black actors, “To complain about what is going on is not going to benefit us.”
— Ms Jere (@GinaJaneJere) March 19, 2016