John Boyega Talks Speaking Up For Himself And Others In The Face Of Injustice
Danny Kasirye for Men’s Health

John Boyega Talks Speaking Up For Himself And Others In The Face Of Injustice

“Our empowerment is not your demise."

Celebrity News

John Boyega has been making noise over the last few years by speaking up for himself and how he’s felt he’s been treated in the entertainment industry. In June 2020, during the height of the Black Lives Matter movement, the Star Wars actor went viral after speaking at a protest in his hometown of London, England. Then in the fall of that year, he called out Disney for sidelining his Star Wars character Finn. Now, the British actor is gearing up to star alongside Viola Davis in The Woman King. In an interview with Men’s Health, John opened up about his career, BLM, and standing up for himself and what he believes in.

Danny Kasirye for 'Men’s Health'

John started gaining popularity due to starring in the Star Wars franchise films such as Star Wars: The Force Awakens and Star Wars: Episode VIII- The Last Jedi. However, he claimed in a GQinterview that his character was pushed aside after initially promoting it as if he would be having a bigger role.

He reflected on that moment with Men’s Health. “I’m the one that brought this to the freaking forefront,” he said. “At least the people going into it now, after my time, [they’re] cool. [Lucasfilm is] going to make sure you’re well supported and at least you [now] go through this franchise knowing that everybody is going to have [your] back. I’m glad I talked out everything at that time.”

He also claimed he never received support after experiencing racism from the renowned franchise’s fans. But he continues to use his voice to raise awareness about what is going on in the Black community and in Hollywood. “Any of us keeping our mouth shut at this point, it doesn’t really feel too comfortable. Because even if you’re British, [you’re] working in the States; the gun’s going to go off before your accent does,” he said.

John was one of many Black entertainers who participated in BLM following the death of George Floyd. While it may have started in the U.S., the movement was worldwide and made its way to London where the 30-year-old participated in the protests. He shared whether or not he received backlash for his passionate speech.

📸📸Danny Kasirye for 'Men’s Health'

“Our empowerment is not your demise. Of course there’s backlash. Seen and unseen. It’s just how it goes,” he said. “You’ll see who’s for you and who’s really not…. [But] this is who I am. I’m going to speak about what I believe in and make sure that whatever I do is aimed at supporting the people.”

John’s parents are from Nigeria and they immigrated to London in the 1980s. He called his parents his “heroes” and was excited about taking on the role in The Woman King as it allowed him to somewhat mimic his father. The actor plays King Ghezo in the West African kingdom of Dahomey, which is present-day Benin.

“The fact that I would be able to speak in my father’s accent, in my native tongue, and portray something that’s different from what I’ve done before, I was like, ‘Yeah, I’m coming. I want to be a part of that big-time.’”

Featured image by Danny Kasirye for Men’s Health

Leslie Grace Says She’s Her ‘Own Damn Hero’ After ‘Batgirl’ Gets Scrapped

Leslie Grace reacted to the news that Batgirl had been canceled by Warner Bros. The DC film starring Leslie Grace as Barbara Gordon aka Batgirl was unexpectedly scrapped with many pointing the finger at the Warner Bros. and Discovery merger that occurred in May 2021. The merger saw a change in leadership and cost-saving measures according to The Hollywood Reporter.

Keep reading...Show less
The daily empowerment fix you need.
Make things inbox official.
Honey & Spice Author Bolu Babalola’s Hopeful Romance
Some may see romantic comedies and dramas as a guilty pleasure. But author Bolu Babalola indulges in the genre with no apology.
Keep reading...Show less
Saweetie Recalls Tough Conversation She Had With Her Parents About Her Childhood: ‘Lots Of Apologies’

Saweetie’s style and relatable personality have made her one of the most popular female rappers out right now. While she has used her social media to help cultivate her brand, she also gives her fans a glimpse at fun moments with her family and friends. From getting glammed up with her mom, who is a former model, to attending NBA games with her father, who female fans have been pining over, Saweetie seems to keep her family around often. However, she recently revealed that wasn’t always the case.

Keep reading...Show less
The Nail Trends To Try Before Hot Girl Summer Is Over

Are you 'Little Miss Never Knows What Design to Get'? It’s okay if you are because this is a safe space. We know that coming up with your next nail design can be as complicated as the Instagram algorithm these days. For me, getting my nails done and conjuring up a design has been a form of self-care and expression. With folks like Marsai Martin creating press-on nails that more than get the job done, the burden isn’t as heavy and there are some nail techs out here redefining what nail design means.

Keep reading...Show less
Karrueche Tran Talks Learning Mindfulness: ‘I Can’t Do Everything. I Can’t Be Everything And That’s Okay’

From stylist to model to Emmy award-winning actress, we have witnessed Karrueche Tran’s career continue to thrive and expand. And with such a demanding and competitive career, the Claws star has sometimes found herself neglecting her mental health in order to achieve her goals. Karrueche opened up about how she deals with career comparisons and working in wellness practices to her busy schedule.

Keep reading...Show less
Exclusive Interviews
Former Beyoncé Dancer Deja Riley On Changing Her Career For Her Mental Health

Former Beyoncé Dancer Deja Riley On Changing Her Career For Her Mental Health

"I felt like I was not enough. And my mental health is important. So when I started feeling that way, I knew that it was time to shift."

Latest Posts