|Terrence Howard and Oprah Winfrey – Lee Daniels’ The Butler
It was expected that Oprah Winfrey would receive an Oscar nomination in the Best Supporting Actress category for Lee Daniels’ The Butler, where she costarred as Forest Whitaker’s (Cecil Gaines) wife, Gloria. But she was snubbed by the Academy Awards in favor of Jennifer Lawrence, Lupita Nyong’o, Julia Roberts, June Squibb, and Sally Hawkins.
Gloria (Oprah Winfrey) is a role as juicy, meaty, and demanding as they come. She battles and overcomes being an alcoholic. She is a concerned mother, an ignored, adulterous, and loving wife. She loses one son to the Vietnam War and the other to political activism. Winfrey even dances along to Soul Train, sporting a huge Afro and a glittery unitard. Oprah Winfrey delivers in a role where she could have “chewed the scenery,” but she instead carefully avoids the overly melodramatic in her role as the heart of the film.
Myrna E. Duarte