Academy Award-winning Ugandan-British actor Daniel Kaluuya is ESSENCE Magazine‘s latest digital cover star.


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In 2017, the highly acclaimed movie Get Out launched Daniel Kaluuya’s career as a leading man in Hollywood and simultaneously established filmmaker Jordan Peele as an innovator of avant-garde cinema.

For the cover story, Daniel has a chat with Jordan about their upcoming movie Nope. Ahead of the release, the publication brought both talents together for a candid conversation about their unique bond as actor and director—and the intentionality that made Kaluuya the star he is today.


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Read excerpts from the interview below:

“I’ve never told you this, but when you reached out to me and we had that Skype, I was really disillusioned with acting,” the Oscars and Golden Globes winner revealed to Peele. “I had stopped acting for like a year and a half. I checked out, because I was just like, this isn’t working. I wasn’t getting roles, because of racism and all this kind of stuff — so you reaching out was like, ‘OK, I’m not crazy. It’s proper. It’s going to be all right.’”

Kaluuya also said that he has seen a difference between audiences in Britain and in the United States.

“It’s something I learned on the press run for Judas and the Black Messiah,” he said. “A lot of times people think I’m guarded, but I’m just new. I’m in a new country. Then, when I was being more open, people were talking to me about the interviews — and I’m like, Why are you talking about the interviews? They weren’t talking about the film.”

He continued, “In England, you don’t root for people the same way. In America, it’s like, ‘Oh, that’s my guy. He’s got my perspective. Or she’s got my perspective. Cool, I’m rolling with them.’ In England, it’s about talent, and I think in America it’s about the character of a person.”

Read the full interview here


Photographer: Erik Carter/ @erik_carter
Writer: Brande Victorian/ @be_vic
Fashion Stylist: Jason Rembert/@jasonrembert
Makeup: Jessica Smalls/ Forward Artists
@jessicasmalls @forwardartists
Barber: Trell Jones/ @iamtrelljones
Production: Fox and Leopard/ @fox.and.leopard