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In January, Jordan Peele announced his decision to quit acting so he could focus on directing. After making his solo directorial debut with Get Out in 2017, he said, "Acting is just nowhere near as fun for me as directing."
While accepting the First-Time Director honors at the DGA Awards Saturday night, Peele explained that The Emoji Movie was partially to blame for his decision to move on from his career as an actor. "The Emoji Movie actually helped me quit acting," he said. "I was offered the role of Poop."
Realizing the story could be misinterpreted as a joke, Peele added, "This is true. I would not make this up." He said his manager told him the news and he responded by saying, "That’s fucked up." The next day, out of curiosity, he asked how much the gig would pay, "[My manager told me], 'They’ve already given it to Sir Patrick Stewart,'" Peel continued. "I was like, 'Fuck this.'"
Peele was inspired to tell the story after host Judd Apatow's monologue included the anecdote: "When you have women directors you get Lady Bird, Mudbound, and Wonder Woman. When you have male directors you get The Emoji Movie, with a character who is a literal piece of shit."
So far, Peele's decision has worked out well for him. The Emoji Movie has been panned with horrible reviews and widely acknowledged as the giant waste of time everyone expected it to be all along. Meanwhile, Peele's Get Out has been nominated for four Academy Awards: Best Director (Peele), Best Actor (Daniel Kaluuya), Best Original Screenplay (Peele again), and Best Picture.