It wasn’t that long ago that Baltimore’s own Mo’Nique was at the top of her game. The actress and comedian had hit movies, a talk show, a radio show and was an Oscar winner. She recently penned an essay for a Hollywood reporter and called out Empire creator Lee Daniels:
I got a phone call from Lee Daniels…And he said to me, “‘Mo’Nique, you’ve been blackballed.’ I said, ‘Why?’ And he said, ‘Because you didn’t play the game.
Mo’Nique was famously criticized for the way she acted during the award season of 2009/2010, causing quite the stir when she refused to shave her legs, go to certain appearances and play the game of campaigning for her vote. During her acceptance speech of her Oscar Mo’Nique stated, “thank you for showing that it can be about the performance and not the politics.”
In response to the essay Daniels stated to THR:
Mo’Nique is a creative force to be reckoned with. Her demands through Precious were not always in line with the campaign. This soured her relationship with the Hollywood community. I consider her a friend. I have and will always think of her for parts that we can collaborate on, however the consensus among the creative teams and powers thus far were to go another way with these roles.
It’s unfortunate that Mo’Nique has fallen off the scene, losing roles in both The Butler and Empire. Hopefully with time she’ll be able to bounce back.