As we approach the one-year anniversary of that time the Oscars tried to bamboozle us into thinking La La Land was a better film than Moonlight, Barry Jenkins says the nightmare still haunts him. During a THR roundtable with the only black filmmakers nominated for Best Director in Oscars history — Jordan Peele, Lee Daniels, John Singleton, and Jenkins — the Moonlight director relived the horror. “I’ve never been as distraught as I was at the Vanity Fair party after the Oscars,” he remembers. “I mean, did you see the show? It’s not the kind of thing where you go running off with pom-poms.” He says the whole fiasco clouded the award with doubt that lingered for the rest of his year. “Something had changed. I wasn’t sure what that thing was. I wasn’t sure that thing was mine or who it belonged to because of how everything happened. And it made 2017 a very long year.”
And try as he might to get Peele excited about his big night, he just can’t; the wounds are still too fresh. “I look back on that whole process, the process that you (looks to Jordan) have handled very well, my friend, and all that shit comes together at the end and because of how things went down, I didn’t enjoy it,” he says. “And I’m never going to get the opportunity to enjoy that — because even if it happens again, it won’t be the same. Moonlight was a very special film for me.” Please come over here so we can hug you, Barry!