Published in L.A. Weekly
John Ridley is on his cellphone, talking to his sister for the first time since he won an Oscar for writing 12 Years a Slave.
"It's like Excalibur. I should give it to the Lady of the Lake," he says, dismissively: The statuette has ended up in a drawer. When it was in the kitchen, "We had to dust around it."
It's not that he's ashamed of the honor. But he wants to force himself to focus on the future.
In recent years, Ridley has been pegged as a black-history specialist. In addition to 12 Years, he wrote a still-unmade L.A. Riots script. A Jimi Hendrix song, "Sending My Love to Linda," inspired him to write and direct Jimi: All Is By My Side, starring Outkast's André Benjamin; it comes out in June.