Mo'Nique says she's been "blackballed" in Hollywood after winning an Academy Award for her role in "Precious."
In a new interview with The Hollywood Reporter, the actress reveals the turn her career has taken in the five years since she accepted her supporting actress Oscar -- after refusing to campaign for the award.
"I got a phone call from ['Precious' director] Lee Daniels maybe six or seven months ago," she recalled in the interview. "And he said to me, 'Mo'Nique, you've been blackballed.' And I said, 'I've been blackballed? Why have I been blackballed?' And he said, 'Because you didn't play the game.'"
"And I said, 'Well, what game is that?'" Mo'Nique continued. "And he gave me no response. The next thing he said to me was, 'Your husband is outbidding you.' But he never asked me what [salary] we were asking for. You know, my husband and I had to change things so we wouldn't have to depend on [others]. So we do it independently. We're very proud of taking the independent route, and we have a movie coming out on April 24 called 'Blackbird.'"
When asked by THR what Daniels meant by the "outbidding" comment, she replied, "That's a question you would have to ask Lee Daniels. There have been people that have said, 'Mo'Nique, she can be difficult. Mo'Nique and her husband can be difficult.' They could probably be right. One of the networks said to [Lee] that I was 'really difficult to work with.' And I said, 'Well, that's funny, because I've never even worked with them, but OK.'"
The actress and comedian went on to say she was approached for three major roles -- one in "Lee Daniels' The Butler" that went to Oprah Winfrey, a role on the new Fox series "Empire" and playing Richard Pryor's grandmother in Daniels' upcoming biopic -- but that they "all just went away."
In response to her comments, Daniels gave a statement to The Hollywood Reporter that said: "Mo'nique is a creative force to be reckoned with. Her demands through Precious were not always in line with the campaign. This soured her relationship with the Hollywood community. I consider her a friend. I have and will always think of her for parts that we can collaborate on. However, the consensus among the creative teams and powers thus far were to go another way with these roles."
Head to The Hollywood Reporter to read Mo'Nique's full interview. You can watch her "Precious" acceptance speech at the 2010 Oscars below: