Article4 C. Domingo

Colman Domingo, award-winning actor and playwright, is currently in Atlanta filming a movie about the 1965 voting rights campaign in Selma, Ala.

Colman Domingo, 44, playwright and award-winning actor is eager to talk about his recent success and life as an actor. Domingo has starred in major motion pictures including Lee Daniels’s The Butler, playing Freddie Fallows, and Lincoln playing Pvt.  Harold. He performed in a theatre production of The Scottsboro Boys and in his own play, Wild with Happy. Now he is also a key player in Selma, a movie now being filmed in Atlanta about the 1965 voting rights campaign in Selma, Ala.

In Selma, Domingo is cast as Rev. Ralph Abernathy, a minister and close associate of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. “I auditioned like any other actor and the director thought I had something to give to the character,” Domingo said.

In the film he works with David Oyelowo, an accomplished actor who is portraying King in the film. Domingo said, “We have worked together in previous films Spielberg’s Lincoln and Lee Daniel’s The Butler. He is an actor I trust and very deeply admire.”

While limited by contract in what he can say during production about Selma, he was more open about Wild with Happy, a play he wrote that opened at thePublic Theater in New York City and is now at Center Stage in Baltimore through June 29.

“It’s a dark comedy… a satire about grief and fairy tales,” Domingo said, “deconstructing the Cinderella story through the lens of a gay African-American male.” He attributed the idea for the play to conversations he had with friends. It focuses on coping with the loss of both parents and coping with the reality of the need to move on with life. In 2006, Domingo lost both of his parents. “I had to balance living and grieving and grow in a precarious way,” he said.

He told the AFRO he wants to be known as an actor who works in different mediums, including stage and film. He also wants to make his mark as a playwright. “I learned everything by doing. My career has been my own creation. It’s always been about a craftsman mentality.”

He was nominated for a best actor Tony Award for his performance in The Scottsboro Boys, won aGay Lesbian Bisexual Transsexual alliance GLAAD Award as author of A Boy and His Soul  and won an OBIE Award for his performance in Passing Strange. He has also been singled out by Audelco, Connecticut CriticsCircle and Bay Area Theater Critics Circle for his work as an actor, playwright and director.

He said he believes the key to a successful acting career is just sticking with the process. “I think it takes tenacity, dedication, hard work, and faith. I think you have to be true to who you are.”

Jonathan Hunter

AFRO Staff Writer