Best Supporting Actor
You’ve now won two Oscars in the last three years. How does that make you feel?
Guess. It was, I think, like five minutes ago, I got this, or seven. I was on a list with the greatest actors around, with Robert De Niro, with Alan Arkin, with Tommy Lee Jones with Philip Seymour Hoffman. How do you think someone feels when all of a sudden his name is called in that context? I can't tell you. I'm sorry.
This is the second Best Supporting Actor Oscar that you've gotten for work by Quentin Tarantino. Has he talked to you about a third role in his revisionist history trilogy?
No. As I said, this is about seven minutes old. Somehow I failed to catch the moment to remind Quentin that I'm around.
What does it mean for you personally now, this award?
It really has so much to do with the other actors who were nominated with me, or rather, and I insist on that difference, the fact that I was nominated with them. It means actually, I don't know what it can mean more, but if it can, then that's what it does.
In light of the subject matter of your film, are you excited about the possibility of a black pope? That's an actual thing. He's from Ghana.
Yeah, well, I have to tell you one thing. It would be an exciting thing. I am a very adamant non-racist. I don't care whether the pope is black or white or whatever color. If we are non-racist, then we have to stay non-racist all the way.
You just won an Oscar for the highest-grossing western in history. How does that make you feel? Western?
I'm just an actor, I am not an accountant. I love this movie, not for being the highest grossing one. I love this movie because it's a fabulous, exciting piece of entertainment with a really deep message. So I'm glad that it's popular because this is what the box office reflects. But the money, sorry, I do something else.
Can you talk some more about why Quentin Tarantino brings out the best in you? What about Quentin made you win another Oscar?
I said it just now, and I hope you don't mind my repeating it. Quentin writes poetry, and I like poetry.
Were you shocked to win tonight?
Totally. I still am. Literally. That's why my answers are somewhat incoherent, but I don't care.
Did you prepare a speech?
Well, I thought about what one could say in case because, you know, as Seth MacFarlane said in the beginning about a million people are watching. You don't want to be you know, you're nominated, there is an off chance that you might have to, you know I didn't prepare speech, but I thought of something.
When did you realize that there was something special about “Django Unchained”?
When I read the script for the first time, I realized that there was something special about this film. I know Quentin, and I read the pages more or less as they came out of the printer. Page by page, I realized that something special is in the making.
How did you feel when you heard your name called as a winner?
How it feels, I said that before. The list of names is — and I know there is a terrible inflation about this word, but I mean it in the literal sense — "awesome." It is I am in awe of the people who work or are in my category. So the very fact that I am one of them would have been, would have meant the world, and that's why I keep mentioning them because Robert De Niro, Alan Arkin are role models for me since I started in this profession.
For more info: Academy Awards website
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