Oscar-winning actress and comedian Mo’Nique has been embroiled in a battle with Oprah Winfrey, among other black Hollywood heavyweights, for years. In a lengthy Instagram post Monday, the “Precious” actress spoke out about the media mogul making her “life harder” and harming the image of famous black men with #MeToo coverage.
Mo’Nique posted what she referred to as an “open letter” to Oprah on Monday evening. In the post, the 52-year-old makes contrasts and comparisons between Winfrey’s involvement with documentaries about sexual assault allegations against Michael Jackson and Russell Simmons versus Harvey Weinstein.
I felt compelled to write you this open letter after observing the disparity in the way that you seem to treat people, who were accused of the same allegations. You did an interview on the CBS Morning Show and were asked about Harvey Weinstein by Norah O’Donnell, and you said as it pertained to him that you “always try to look at the Rainbow in the clouds, whatever is the “silver lining”. You also said “if we make this all about Harvey Weinstein then we have lost the moment”. When you either are, or were going to be a part of documentary on Michael Jackson, and Russell Simmons, how is that not making it all about them? Interestingly, Brother M.J. was acquitted, and deceased, so how is he not off limits? Russell and Harvey are accused of the same thing so in fairness how do you not “support” the accusers of both as you said you did with R.S. or you look for the silver lining for both like you said you did for H.W.?
The comedian/actress, whose comedy special “Mo’Nique & Friends” premieres on Showtime on Friday, went on to say that the “only difference between” the legendary pop musician and hip-hop mogul as compared to former film executive Weinstein is “skin color.”
Mo’Nique’s history with Oprah
Mo’Nique made her issue with Winfrey, Lee Daniels and Tyler Perry known during a stand-up appearance at the Apollo Theater in 2017. She said Winfrey and the others did not support her after she was effectively blackballed after winning an Oscar for her powerful role in “Precious.” The actress said Daniels and others were not pleased with her complaints about the promotional expectations for the film, which Daniels directed and produced.
In addition to not feeling supported after the “Precious” debacle, Mo’Nique has also expressed she felt betrayed by the former talk show host when she interviewed her brother, whom she accused of sexually abusing her, in 2010.
Since making her grievances known, Mo’Nique — on several occasions — said it would take a public apology from Winfrey to bury the hatchet. In the letter posted on her Instagram Monday, the “Blackbird” actress shared her first meeting with Oprah and her disappointment with feeling like the media mogul made her “life harder.”
My personal experience with you is you’ve watched me as a black women be accused of being difficult for not promoting “Precious” internationally for Lions Gate, at Lions Gate, Tyler Perry and your request, despite the fact my deal was with Lee Daniels Entertainment. And, how are you for black women when you hear Tyler on audio saying I was right and he was going to speak up but you or him still haven’t said a word? When I was sixteen and I meet you at your local show in Baltimore, I told you I wanted to be just like you when I grew up. You responded, “ you have to work really really hard”. My sixteen year old self didn’t know that you in your silence in the face of wrongdoing, would make my life “harder”. Lastly, please consider standing by the people who are right and not just the “right people”.
Love you to life,
See the full Instagram post below:
Support real journalism. Support local journalism. Subscribe to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution today. See offers.
Your subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution funds in-depth reporting and investigations that keep you informed. Thank you for supporting real journalism.