Daniel Kaluuya made his ‘SNL’ debut on April 3, opening the show with a poignant conversation about racism.
Daniel Kaluuya, 32, made his Saturday Night Live debut on April 3! The Oscar nominee was scheduled to appear alongside returning performer, Grammy winner St. Vincent, 38. Following the cold open, Daniel made made a poignant statement in his opening monologue. “I’m sure you can hear the accent,” The British-born actor said. “‘Oh no, he’s not Black. He’s British.’ Let reassure you that I am Black and I’m British. Basically, I’m what the Royal Family was worried the baby would look like,” he quipped — referencing Meghan Markle and Prince Harry’s son Archie, 1.
“People ask me what’s worse: British racism or American racism?” Daniel — clad in a navy blue outfit with bright orange piping — went on. “Let put it this way: British racism is so bad, white people left. They wanted to be free to create their own racisms. So that’s why invaded Australia, South Africa — and Boston,” he joked. He also shared a bit about his own family, who hails from Uganda. “My dad is one of 22 kids and my dad is one of 49…they say Black don’t crack, but condoms do,” he also joked, noting his aunt was in the audience.
The appearance was a huge deal for Daniel, who just scored his second Oscar nomination in the Best Supporting Actor category for Judas and the Black Messiah. In the film, Daniel plays the late Fredrick Allen Hampton, who was an activist who came to prominence as the chairman of the Illinois chapter of the Black Panther Party. After being identified as a radical threat by the FBI, he was assassinated. “Chairman Fred Hampton was a light, a beacon of a being who would illuminate all he touched with his incredible message. With the ability to command any stage and robbed of his opportunity to captivate a global audience,” the British born actor said to CNN in reaction to the nomination. “Today, I am humbled to be nominated for portraying a man whose principles I deeply respect and for guiding me to walk in his footsteps,” he went on.
“I became a vessel for Chairman Fred’s spirit at a time when we need his rally cry for equality and justice more than ever. I commend my fellow nominees for their impressive work. To be seen and celebrated by my peers in the Academy of Motion Picture Arts & Sciences is beautifully humbling and I am deeply grateful,” he added, referencing the historic Black Lives Matter movement. He also earned a Best Actor nod in 2018 for Jordan Peele‘s Get Out.