The box office struggles of Selma (it has pulled in just $29 million since its Christmas release) and its subsequent Oscar snubs have sparked a national conversation about race, film, and awards recognition, and Anthony Mackie recently offered his own take on the situation.

Speaking with The Grio to promote his movie Black and White, Mackie said he believes that Selma isn’t doing well purely because of its subject matter. “People are just tired of being bombarded with race right now,” he said. “So everybody is shying away from certain topics and certain movies.”

Mackie doesn’t see a lack of acting Oscar nominations from Selma or other movies with strong performances by African-Americans as racism; instead, he likes to think that those nominated simply did better. “If you look at all the movies and actors that are nominated, they all gave damn good performances,” he said. “Me specifically, if that’s something I want, I have to step my game up. I have to do better movies and I have to act better.”

But don't expect Mackie to consider any new hairstyles. Later in the interview, Mackie seemed to be pretty anti-dreadlocks, for some reason, as he relayed the following story:

“Like my nephew wanted to grow dreadlocks. I’m like fine, I’ll sit you down and I’ll watch The First 48 with you and everybody you see on that show, that’s doing something wrong, they’re black dudes with dreadlocks. So, do you want to be seen as part of the problem or do you want to be an individual?

“Let’s just say you have locks and you walking down the street. The police pull you over and say you fit the description of somebody. You start yelling and arguing with the cops. Next thing you know you pressed up against the wall going to jail for something you’re not even involved in just because you look like somebody and you don’t know how to handle yourself.”


[via The Grio]