Brad Pitt: '12 Years a Slave' Win Significant for Making Sense of History
"It's important that we understand our history, not for any kind of guilt but that we understand who we were so that we can better understand who we are now," says the producer of the drama.
Speaking shortly after 12 Years a Slave claimed the Oscar best picture, producer Brad Pitt reiterated the significance of the project to reporters backstage in the press room -- noting that the title was intended as "a gentle reminder that we're all equal."
"It's important that we understand our history, not for any kind of guilt, but that we understand who we were so that we can better understand who we are now, and why we're having the specific problems we're having or the successes were having," he said. "Most importantly who we're going to be."
Pitt, along with director Steve McQueen and producers Dede Gardner, Jeremy Kleiner, Anthony Katagas spoke about the resonance of the film. The acclaimed drama took home three awards, including best adapted screenplay for John Ridley and best supporting actress for Lupita Nyong'o.
"At the end of the day we just hope that this film remains a gentle reminder that we're all equal," Pitt said. "We all want the same, we want dignity and opportunity for ourselves and our family."
The day before the Oscars, THR caught up with the 12 Years a Slave's director, cast member and producers at the Indie Spirt Awards. Watch the video of the members involved in the award-winning feature.
Pitt praised Nyong'o as "an absolute gem" and made a point to single out actor Chiwetel Ejiofor's "restraint" and "elegance" during his turn portraying Solomon Northup.
"It's been a long run, and this is very, very, very exciting moment for us," Pitt said. "It's a real joy and something to ruminate on and really understand what it all means. At the same time, when the film was complete, I had this also this extraordinary feeling knowing that this is a film that will ‑‑ that has legs, that will be around and be speaking to people for many, many years, and that's the biggest pride."