“I wasn’t going to be a prostitute”: Angela Bassett Turned Down Potential Oscar Winning Role in $45M Romantic Drama as Marvel Star Wins Honorary Oscar After 30 Years

Angela Bassett Turned Down Potential Oscar Winning Role in $45M Romantic Drama as Marvel Star Wins Honorary Oscar After 30 Years
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Actress Angela Bassett, who has made a name for herself with strong roles and a wide range, has recently caused quite a stir. She declined a role in the 2001 romantic drama Monster’s Ball, for which she was a strong contender for an Academy Award. Nonetheless, neither professional nor private considerations influenced her final choice.


Instead, it was motivated by her desire to challenge the underrepresentation of Black women in media by not playing into harmful stereotypes. After over 30 years in the business, Bassett has finally been awarded an honorary Oscar for her outstanding contributions.

Angela Bassett Stands Against Harmful Stereotypes

Angela Bassett
Angela Bassett

Choosing not to play Leticia Musgrove in Monster’s Ball clearly demonstrates Angela Bassett’s unwavering dedication to avoiding roles that perpetuate negative stereotypes of Black women. She elaborated in a 2002 interview with Newsweek:


“It’s about character. I wasn’t going to be a prostitute on film. I couldn’t do that because it’s such a stereotype about Black women and sexuality.”

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Angela Bassett has spent her career picking parts that give people agency and inspiration. Her portrayal of Tina Turner in What’s Love Got to Do with It was her first major acting role and a smashing success.

Bassett could channel a person who defied norms and triumphed despite hardships through the portrayal of the legendary singer. She was nominated for an Academy Award for her portrayal, and she ultimately won the award.

Angela Bassett in What's Love Got To Do
Angela Bassett in What’s Love Got To Do With It

Angela Bassett’s commitment to portraying powerful women goes beyond her portrayal of historical figures. She has helped bring unsung heroes’ stories to the big screen. Bassett captured the essence of civil rights activist Rosa Parks in The Rosa Parks Story, in which she portrayed Parks.

Bassett uses her platform to teach and inspire through the stories of real-life heroes, ensuring that their legacies will live on. Because of Angela Bassett, media portrayals of Black women are being revised because she refuses to play into harmful stereotypes.

An Honorary Oscar: A Long-Overdue Recognition

Angela Bassett
Angela Bassett

Through her portrayal of intelligent and capable protagonists, she challenges stereotypes and sheds light on the diverse and intricate experiences of Black women. By standing firm on her beliefs, Angela Bassett has inspired other actors and actresses to push for more accurate portrayals and question the status quo.


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Angela Bassett’s refusal to accept a role in Monster’s Ball that could have won her an Oscar demonstrates her unwavering dedication to portraying Black women honestly and tackling harmful stereotypes.

Her brave decisions have inspired new generations of actors and actresses to tell stories more representative of society.  For a Hollywood actress like Angela Bassett, the well-deserved honorary Oscar is a powerful recognition of her influence as an artist, both on and off stage. Without a doubt, Angela Bassett’s legacy will encourage and influence future filmmakers.


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Source: Entertainment Weekly

Mabel Andrady

Written by Mabel Andrady

Articles Published: 694

Mabel, aka MJ, is a FandomWire Sr. Writer, pop-culture fanatic, and an MA in Health Demography holder. When she's not indulging in her guilty pleasure of penning everything Hollywood, Marvel & DC, she writes academic essays on COVID-19 and HIV/AIDS. With 2500+ articles published online, she brings a unique twist to entertainment writing. A jack-of-all-trades, MJ enjoys movies, writes/acts in plays, writes music, and dreams of being a successful actress. She offers a fresh perspective, making her writing a must-read for those seeking knowledge and entertainment.