Jamie Foxx has a filmography that will make any actor envious. However, the one project that every actor will have their eyes glued on is the 2004 film biopic Ray. After all, that project gave him his first Oscar win. Based on the life of the late singer Ray Charles, the movie wasn’t easy to do for Foxx.
After all, there was one major thing that the actor had to account for in his movements- the lack of eyesight. However, that wasn’t the only challenge. He was initially also afraid of meeting the singer and messing up his first impression.
Jamie Foxx Was Terrified Of Meeting Ray Charles For Biopic Film
Taylor Hackford, the director of Ray, talked about Jamie Foxx and late singer Ray Charles’ first meeting before the movie went into production. Charles apparently wanted to meet Foxx so that he could ensure that the actor portraying him was capable of doing him justice. So when the two first met they chilled out at the piano and that’s all it took for Charles to approve of Foxx playing him.
CS Monitor reported Hackford saying, “Ray didn’t let up on him. He said, ‘Come on, man, it’s right under your fingers. Come on, man.’ The pressure was almost embarrassing.” The Annie actor’s hard work earned him an Oscar win in 2005 in the Best Actor category. But the star thought he had no chance of winning. Due to this, he didn’t take the Academy Awards seriously.
At the Tribeca Film Festival, Foxx said, “When I was up for the Oscar I didn’t take it seriously at all. I thought there was no way to win that. I took [Oscar season] as an excuse to party. I was like, ‘Oh, I’m nominated? Break out the champagne and let’s party.’” The Django Unchained actor was then reprimanded by his publicist who said, “What are you doing? You see how embarrassing this is?”
After talking with other industry stalwarts like Sydney Poitier and Oprah, he toned his behavior down. Even though he didn’t believe that he deserved the award, anyone who has watched the film knows that he did. Not just for his acting ability, but also due to the sheer physical and makeup transformation he put himself through. One of which included gluing his eyes shut.
Jamie Foxx’s Eyelids Were Glued Shut For Ray
In an interview with Black Film in 2004, Jamie Foxx described what it was like filming the movie Ray with his eyelids glued shut. The actor revealed that he initially hyperventilated. He said, “First we glued my eyelids closed and that was crazy. You gotta get me soap, this is not gonna work! I hyperventilated the first few times and then they finally got it right and got the method down from five hours to maybe like an hour to get them done and made it easier.”
But the entire process just got a little easier, never comfortable for him. The actor, in fact, likened the eyelid gluing process to being trapped inside a coffin. He said, “They had to hold me down because it’s like being in a coffin alive. That was the sense of it because I couldn’t open my eyes. Even if I opened my eyes I still couldn’t see anything because the prosthetics was over the whole eyelid. It was freakish.”
The actor said that not being able to see drove him nuts after some time. But all that hard work eventually paid off when he got to hold the coveted golden statue in his hands for the first time.
Ray is available on Amazon Prime Video.
Source: Black Film