The Independent reports Nicholson worked on the script for the Nelson Mandela biopic for 15 years and said its failure was "very distressing" after the "really good job" he and director Justin Chadwick had done. Modest, right?
But "12 Years a Slave" isn't the only thing Nicholson is blaming for his film's flop.
He also reportedly claimed Nelson Mandela's death shortly before the film's December 2013 release put a limit on its success. (Via The New York Times)
The Guardian quotes him as saying, "Mandela died as I was in the royal premiere with Will and Kate. We were deluged with Mandela stuff and after a week we all thought, 'Please take it away, we've heard enough about Mandela.'"
Then again, Nicholson shouldn't feel too bad, considering the competition at this year's Academy Awards was pretty stiff, what with "Dallas Buyers Club," "Gravity," "Wolf of Wall Street" and "American Hustle."
But, then again, "Mandela: Long Walk to Freedom" has yet to profit from its $35 million budget. "12 Years a Slave," on the other hand, raked in an impressive $140 million worldwide even before it won big at the Oscars.