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Kerry Washington Wendell Pierce Premiere of HBO Films' 'Confirmation' at Paramount Theater


Wendell Pierce Talks About Finding Commonalities With Clarence Thomas For “Confirmation” And Credits Anita Hill For Being A Catalyst For #MeToo Movement

Wendell Pierce is currently playing CIA agent James Greer on Amazon Prime’s new series “Tom Clancy’s Jack Ryan” but one of his most memorable roles was portraying Clarence Thomas in HBO’s ‘Confirmation.’ We talked to him about the role and the #MeToo movement recently. Check out our interview below:

BOSSIP: In light of everything going on with “Me Too” are you surprised Clarence Thomas’ name hasn’t been brought up more?

Wendell Pierce: “It was kind of the beginning of that. I think the reason his name hasn’t come up is, it shows you the profoundly powerful — the power of a lifetime appointment is. It just shows you how powerful that is because it protects people from all of that.”

What surprised me about that role was how much we had in common, up until that point where our politics took us different ways. He’s a fascinating study of a human being because I always found him to be, we’re all products of our journey and his journey was so similar to mine — from the South, education was of great importance, a farming family and you are expected to go to school and understand there are racists out there and fight against that and then at one particular point he gave the the benefit of the doubt and saying the reason he did not become a lawyer of a certain firm in Savannah, Georgia was not because of the old boy racist network that they didn’t want a black lawyer at the firm, it was because he had an affirmative action degree and because of that his politics went to the right.

But if we look at it from a human perspective, he went to a seminary school, he was ostracized in his neighborhood, he had no socialization with women, okay? I believe Anita Hill because his lack of a socialization with women made it imperceptible of how offensive he was being when he would relate to women. In his attempt to connect to women he was being very offensive. I say all of that to say that we as men need to understand and be educated that something that we thought may have been an incidental joke or we may think, as he did, were compliments, or a way of being charming can be so offensive that we need to be educated with that. I think that’s the great thing about this pendulum swinging the other way is that every man I know reflects on what they’ve done and says okay let me put myself in check that’s why I hope those who are fearful of the MeToo movement and those who will use missteps by the MeToo movement to condemn it, as happened with Asia (Argento) recently, I hope the movement continues, I think it’s a good thing.

His name has come back up. Anita Hill has been prominent in these movements.

Have you seen ‘Confirmation’? What do you think about Clarence Thomas being back in the news cycle again thanks to his wife’s far right leanings?


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