B.L. Antwone Fisher
had its world premiere at the Toronto International Film Festival.
How exciting was that for you?
D.L. My mother got to see it and I was so excited, because my dream
was that people would notice me on TV and I wouldn't have
to tell them anything, and that's what happened. It was a
dream come true.
B.L. Then walking that red
carpet...this is a first for you.
D.L. It was scary, everybody calling my name, "Derek, hey,
over here." Actually, Denzel gave me some pointers on how to
start from left to right so it was pretty cool.
B.L. What ended up being
the toughest thing for you because it's not only a first time
role for you, but you are playing somebody who you have become friends
with and you want to be responsible for playing his life right.
D.L. Antwone is an easygoing guy and he never put any pressure on
me. He never put any pressure and I don't know why because
I would probably be putting pressure on him. (laughs). It shows
you what kind of guy he is. He maybe assumed how important it was,
maybe just using his wisdom and knowing it was my first film. I
don't know, they said it was a very blessed set and everybody
was just so helpful. There was pressure, but not that much pressure.
B.L. How did Denzel Washington
help you, not only in terms of being a good director but a co-star
D.L. It was pretty much almost like sitting across in your seat,
because the way we acted, he directed from where you were sitting.
If I was off or needed to do something again he'd let me know
that I needed to put more energy into it and I really appreciated
it. I felt like being with him was like I was being cuddled.
B.L. What was the best piece
of advice that he gave you or to put you at ease?
D.L. He told me one time that I was doing a good job and he never
complained so that put me at ease. I thought that was a little abnormal
because people were preparing me, telling me not to be surprised
if he pulls you to the side or comes to your room and tells you
this and that and that. A lot of that didn't happen, he just
told me when I needed to pull up and mostly he told me just to allow
the freedom to happen. He told me not to be scared; it's too
late to be fearful -- you're here now!
B.L. Playing this guy, it's
inevitable that it had to touch you in some way. How did it change
you? It's an inspiring story.
D.L. I just know now that dreams really come true.
B.L. Especially for you,
because I understand that Hollywood has come calling and you have
two more movies coming out after this. One called Biker Boyz
and Pieces of April with Katie Holmes.
D.L. You go girl, you did your homework!
B.L. In Biker Boyz,
you got to work with Laurence Fishburne. How cool was that?
D.L. Hey, he's Morpheus! It was fun and impressive working
with him. There's a lot of action and I'm not going
to say who wins but you got to go see it!