Cuba Gooding Jr. praises Oprah's performance in 'The Butler'

theGRIO REPORT - During an interview with theGrio, Academy Award winner Cuba Gooding Jr. talked about his new Broadway play 'The Trip to Bountiful,' and praised Oprah's performance in 'The Butler.'...

Cuba Gooding Jr. is headed to Broadway to the star alongside Vanessa Williams, Cicely Tyson, and Condola Rashad in The Trip to Bountiful.

The show tells the story of an aging widow (Tyson), who leaves her son (Gooding), and his wife (Williams) against their wishes, to visit the home where she grew up, one last time.

During a New York City press event for The Trip to Bountiful Gooding talked about his on-stage role and opened up about his upcoming film The Butler.

This year marks the 10-year-anniversary of  the film The Fighting Temptations; the musical comedy where Gooding shared an on-screen romance with Beyoncé Knowles.

Gooding compared his on-screen romance with Beyoncé to his on-stage marriage to Williams.

“They’re both beautiful women, they’re both super talented,” Gooding told theGrio’s Chris Witherspoon. “They both can sing amazing, and both of them are supportive of experimentation; of just being completely open and available to their emotions.”

Last week Terrence Howard made headlines after making a crude remark about Oprah Winfrey while describing a love scene he filmed with her for the upcoming Lee Daniels film The Butler.

“To be able to make out with Oprah…to have love scenes with her and those ‘tig ol’ bitties…’” Howard said during an interview for his new film.

Gooding, who screened The Butler in its entirety yesterday, raved over Oprah’s first movie role since Beloved, which was 15 years ago.

“I just saw it. I literally just saw it yesterday,” Gooding revealed.  “ It’s a monster… a beast… phenomenal… it’s beautifully shot. There are scenes in it that will be disturbing and beautiful at the same time.”

The Butler is a biopic about the legendary Eugene Allen, who served eight different U.S. presidents from the 1950s through the 1980s. Gooding stars as one of the three butlers in the film alongside Forrest Whitaker, Lenny Kravitz, Robin Williams, Mariah Carey and many more A-list stars.

The Academy Award winning actor says that Oprah is “transformative” in her role.

“Oprah is phenomenally beautiful in the movie. When you see her performance, you’ll understand why you’re upset she hasn’t been back on the big screen since Beloved. You’ll understand why we love her so much as an actress.”

Gooding can be seen on Broadway in The Trip to Bountiful, which opens for previews March 30.

Follow Chris Witherspoon on Twitter at @WitherspoonC