Journalist Denies Mistaking Daniel Kaluuya For Leslie Odom Jr. At Oscars, Apologizes

Journalist Denies Mistaking Daniel Kaluuya For Leslie Odom Jr. At Oscars And Apologizes

Was it an ignorant mistake, unclear wording, or both?

At the 2021 Academy Awards this past Sunday (April 25th), journalist Margaret Gardiner of the Hollywood Foreign Press Association (HFPA) asked Daniel Kaluuya a question that implied she mistook him for Leslie Odom Jr.

Daniel Kaluuya–who won Best Supporting Actor for his role in Judas and the Black Messiah–was taking questions in the Oscars’ virtual press room after his big win, when Margaret Gardiner began her interaction. After congratulating him on his win and claiming to have “been following [Daniel Kaluuya] since the beginning of [his] career,” she asks:

“I was wondering what it meant for you to be directed by Regina [King], [and] what this means for you at this time with the world in the state that it’s in.”

After Kaluuya asks her to repeat the question, Margaret Gardiner rephrases:

“I was wondering what it meant for you to win with the world in the state that it’s in at the moment.”

While Kaluuya addresses the reporter’s question, he can be seen expressing what appears to be a look of disbelief to someone off-screen following the encounter.


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Following the interaction between Kaluuya and Gardiner, many honed in on her apparent mistake of confusing Kaluuya with Leslie Odom Jr.

Both Kaluuya and Leslie Odom Jr. were nominated for Best Supporting Actor. The former was nominated for his role in Shaka King‘s Judas and the Black Messiah, while the latter was nominated for his contribution to Regina King‘s One Night in Miami.

In response to allegations of confusing the two aforementioned actors, Gardiner has taken to Twitter to clear her name. She claims that she did not in fact mistake Kaluuya for Odom and, instead, was supposedly asking Kaluuya for his opinion on Regina King not being nominated for Best Director. Gardiner seems to take responsibility for asking her question in an unclear manner, but denies that there was any confusion, outright claiming:

“#DanielKaluuya I did not mistake you for Leslie Odom Jnr.”

She apologized for the interaction, stating:

“I apologize to Daniel Kaluuya for my words. I apologize to anyone else who was offended by them.”

What are your thoughts on Gardiner’s claims? Comment down below to let us know!

Authored by: Nick Fenley