Actor, Malik Yoba, spoke with BET.com about his new role as Martin Luther King Jr. in a TV movie. During the interview, he was asked his opinion about Denzel Washington’s acting. The “Allegience” star says, “No matter how many movies Denzel Washington does, he’s still Denzel in every movie – except for the times he played Malcolm X and Rubin ‘Hurricane’ Carter.” “Those were the roles where he got a chance to stretch a little more. I want to be more like Forest Whitaker in Last King of Scotland. I want to stretch a little more, that’s what I want to do. So playing Martin, I had no fear. It was like here’s a real opportunity to do something. I’m still thrilled about it and I can’t wait to see the finished film.”
While it may be true that Denzel plays himself in every movie, do we really care? He’s Denzel Washington. All he has to do is flash a smile, shoot us a fierce monologue from time to time and we are good. Denzel knows the charm that he has with the ladies and he uses that to his advantage. Every actor or actress has a niche, that they follow, and it works until their career plateaus and they have to find a new trick to use. It is no different with Denzel. Denzel being himself has worked for over twenty years. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it.
But to Malik Yoba’s credit, his response , when put on the spot to answer the question, was very tasteful and true. Just by his response, you can tell that Yoba is an actor who has spent many years working on and studying his craft. His role as Martin Luther King, Jr. may prove to stretch the actor to his limits, but Yoba prepared himself well.
“I spent a lot of my time immersing myself in not just his speeches, but listening to him talking. There are some great interviews of him going all the way back to 1957, when he was 28 years old. It was fascinating to go down that road and learn about all the different people in King’s life – like his mentors and people who went to Morehouse with his dad. It was amazing getting that deep into his life and his point of view of the world. As an actor, I want more of that kind of experience.”
Asa Lovechild is an accomplished actress and singer out of New York City.