Daniel Kaluuya put his heart and soul into playing Fred Hampton in the new film Judas and The Black Messiah. Directed by Shaka King the film is one of the years best and quite arguably Kaluuya’s most powerful performance to date.
So far he’s already nabbed a Golden Globe nomination for Best Supporting Actor for his role as the late Black Panther leader. HipHollywood caught up with him about getting into character and he revealed at one point he even lost his voice while filming one pivotal scene.
“In the I am a revolutionary speech [scene] I lost it. I remember in the last take it was, like gone, and I was like let me just give it, because it was the last one and there was the crowd and I was like I would be restless if I didn’t give it my all, and then Shaka liked it,” he said.
The British-born actor also revealed he gained weight for the role and spent weeks researching and watching Hampton’s speeches.
Set in 1969 Chicago, the story follows Hampton (Kaluuya), chairman of the Illinois Black Panther Party, and his betrayal by FBI informant William O’Neal played by Lakeith Stanfield, who gives an equally powerful performance.
“I enjoy challenges which is why I took on William O’Neal because I was in direct contention with what he did,” explained Stanfield. “I wrote him off as a bad guy, like a snitch. Not a person I would want to be around or be, but thats precisely why I took the role, because it was an internal challenge on myself, what was I really hating, him or me?”
Judas & The Black Messiah is available on HBO Max and in theaters now!