Oprah Winfrey: ‘Trayvon Martin paralleled Emmett Till’

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Oprah Winfrey lights up the screen as the wife of Cecil Gaines in Lee Daniels' historical drama "The Butler." The film is based on the real life White House butler, Eugene Allen, who served eight different U.S. presidents from the 1950s through the 1980s. TheGrio.com's Chris Witherspoon asked Winfrey about her role in the film and other topics, such as the death of Trayvon Martin.

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Oprah Winfrey lights up the screen as Gloria Gaines, the wife of Cecil Gaines, in Lee Daniel’s upcoming historical drama The Butler.

The film is based on the real life White House butler, Eugene Allen, who served eight different U.S. presidents from the 1950s through the 1980s.

Oprah appears alongside and all-star cast including Forest Whitaker, Cuba Gooding Jr., Lenny Kravitz, Terrence Howard, Jesse Williams, Mariah Carey, Jane Fonda, Robin Williams and many more.

The queen of talk opened up to theGrio’s Chris Witherspoon about her new film role and talked about the impact this movie will have on audiences.

“It’s so easy during this time… Trayvon Martin paralleled Emmett Till, let me just tell ya. In my mind. Same thing. You can get stuck in that and not allow yourself to move forward and see how far we’ve come,” she said. “Look at the butler’s life. Look at that opening scene, the hanging… and then the end. We need to give ourselves a round of applause. In this country, with all of its injustices, look at what we’ve been able to do in the span of one man’s lifetime.”

The Butler gives audiences a fictional glimpse into White House during several presidential administrations including that of Lyndon B. Johnson, Dwight Eisenhower, John F. Kennedy, Richard Nixon, Ronald Regan, and President Barack Obama.

Oprah discussed how this film will affect the world’s impression of the Obama administration.

“To Look at all those administrations compared to Obama. I mean Obama will stand alone because of what that represented for the country,” she said. “I was so pleased that during the process of this interview, a white reporter sitting in the very chair that your sitting in, said ‘he didn’t realize until seeing this movie the depth of the importance of Obama.’ If you come away from this movie with that, well then we’ve done our job.”

The Butler hits theaters nationwide August 16.

Follow Chris Witherspoon on Twitter for more Entertainment news at @WitherspoonC