October 3, 2023

Questlove is Officially an Oscar Winner


Dimas Sanfiorenzo

Dimas Sanfiorenzo is the Managing Editor for Okayplayer. He specializes…


Photo Creidt: Mike Coppola/Getty Images

Questlove won his first Oscar for directing the masterful documentary, Summer of Soul.

You can add Academy Award Winner winner to his title.

Congratulations is in order to Questlove who just won a Best Original Documentary Oscar for his directorial debut Summer of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised). The movie, which won over Ascension, Attica, Flee, and Writing With Fire, is about the 1969 Harlem Cultural Festival and was one of the most critically acclaimed movies to come out in 2021. 

In an emotional speech, Questlove, who came to the Oscars with his mother, Jacqui Andrews, stressed that this moment was bigger than him:

“This is such a stunning moment for me right now, but it’s not about me. It’s about marginalized people in Harlem that needed to heal from pain. Just know that in 2022, this is not just a 1969 story about marginalized people in Harlem.” 

Now, unfortunately, Questlove’s win was dampened a bit by the fact it happened just minutes after one of the craziest moments in Oscar history occurred, where Will Smith slapped Chris Rock over a joke about wife Jada Pinkett Smith.

Over the last couple of months, Summer of Soul has nabbed a myriad of awards, including Best Music Documentary, Best Archival Documentary and Best First Documentary Feature at the Critics’ Choice Awards; Best Documentary Film at the Gotham Independent Film Awards; and Best Documentary Film at the National Board of Review.

And they are not close to being done. Summer of Soul is also nominated for Best Music Film at the 2022 Grammys, which is happening next week.

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