Last week, Mo’Nique and Steve Harvey’s heated conversation about the racial and gender disparities within Hollywood went viral, and both comedians have since spoken out.
During their discussion, Mo’Nique said she had been blackballed by Hollywood after she refused to promote the 2009 film “Precious,” which was directed by Lee Daniels and produced by Oprah Winfrey and Tyler Perry, without being paid.
She said she championed integrity over financial gain, arguing, “we’ve lost the integrity worrying about the money.”
Harvey seemingly disagreed.
“I cannot, for the sake of my integrity, stand up here and let everybody that’s counting on me crumble so I can make a statement,” he fired back.
A few days after the interview was posted online, the actress continued to share her thoughts about topic in a series of Instagram reposts.
One upload was a video meme of Muhammad Ali that read, “Y’all Think Steve Harvey Need To Hear This.” In the clip, the boxer said, “money means nothing to me, nor boxing, when it comes to the freedom of your people.”
She captioned the image, “I JUST HAD TO REPOST THIS. THIS IS FOR ANYBODY PUTTING MONEY FIRST AND NOT THE LOVE OF YOUR PEOPLE. I LOVE US FOR REAL!!!!!!”
The entertainer then followed up that post with another that juxtaposed parts of her interview with scenes from “Roots,” the 1977 TV miniseries that chronicled the history of an African man sold to slavery in America and his descendants.
She wrote, “THIS GAVE ME CHILLS!”
On Sunday, Harvey also spoke out clarifying his comments on integrity.
“I never questioned anybody’s principles or anybody’s causes. I was merely questioning, for the 50-minute interview, the method that she chose going about doing it — and I regret that looking back at it now, because that was a bad choice of words,” he told People. “I have lived my whole life as a man of integrity and I will stand on that, but I was really just talking about the method that they went about doing what they did, and that was it.”
He also said he regretted shouting during the conversation.
“I’ve got to slow down when I’m talking,” he continued. “I can’t get into heated discussions, and I’ve got to just guard my words more carefully.”
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.