Awards Season 2018: Betty Gabriel And Georgina's History - PopcornReel.com

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Tuesday, January 30, 2018

AWARDS SEASON 2018: THE 2018 ACE EDDIE AWARDS
Betty Gabriel, And Georgina's History


Betty Gabriel last Friday night pre-ACE Eddie Awards in Beverly Hills, California.
Omar Moore

by
Omar P.L. Moore/PopcornReel.com        Follow popcornreel on Twitter FOLLOW                                           
Tuesday, January 30, 2018

BEVERLY HILLS, California

It is a little hard to believe, as you see Betty Gabriel, that such horror and pain could be indelibly etched on her face and deep within on the big screen, as she walks elegantly towards you with a big smile.  The actor has received many plaudits, though not an Oscar nomination, for her role as Georgina, the maid for a white racist family in Jordan Peele's smash hit "Get Out".

Ms. Gabriel is reminded that she should have been nominated for her work as the unforgettable and pained Georgina, a reminder she politely listens to but doesn't verbally assent to.  Yet there seems a slight hint of acknowledgment in her eyes as she considers one person's opinion on the matter.  On this Friday night Ms. Gabriel is at the ACE Eddie Awards supporting nominated "Get Out" editor Gregory Plotkin and presenting an award.

For few moments before the Eddies were to begin Ms. Gabriel stopped by on the red carpet row for a few questions.  How did she build the character Georgina, the troubled housekeeper who resonates throughout Mr. Peele's film?  "I started off with myself and my life experience which has been of a particular kind because of my race and my gender," Ms. Gabriel offers.

"I watch a lot of old horror movies, particularly 'Bride Of Frankenstein'.  And just loved everything she did so I mimicked a little bit.  It was inspired by that," Ms. Gabriel added.

There were several other influences the actor drew upon, including Martin Pistorius, a man literally trapped inside his body for 13 years, unable to communicate to anyone at all, even himself but finally found a way to.  Ms. Gabriel said she listened to a podcast on Mr. Pistorius and that set her on her way.  "He was a vegetable but he was actually conscious," she said.

"The notion of wasted potential.  I talked to my grandma, my actual grandma who is not white.  She's very Black.  She's like, Alabama Black.  So you can't get any blacker."  Ms. Gabriel laughs as she makes these comments, recalling the journey she took with Georgina, who utters the famous "no no no no no no no no no no no" line in "Get Out".

"It was wild to hear her (Ms. Gabriel's grandmother) talk about her life back in the day in Alabama.  Can you imagine?"

Ms. Gabriel says she pulled from many other places to play Georgina. 

Betty Gabriel reminds her stunned questioner that "Get Out" was shot in just "three weeks and change."

"It's miraculous what he did," Ms. Gabriel says, referring to her "Get Out" director Jordan Peele.  "People need to take that into account, I think.  Because I'm like, 'where are the rest of our awards?'"

Though "Get Out" has won NAACP Image Awards and garnered four Oscar nominations many felt it should have received more Academy Award nods.  Exhibit A: Ms. Gabriel's performance and the acting of Lil Rel Howery, who plays Rod, the TSA agent who is a valuable asset to best friend Chris (Daniel Kaluuya).

"You know, I'm honored to like even be here.  And it's not about the awards it's about -- but I'm also like, 'guys, this was made for less than five million?'  And for like less than a month."

Ms. Gabriel talked about stepping away from Georgina after investing so much in her.  Georgina is a riveting character, and so much backstory could be devised.  You could even do prequels on her alone from Mr. Peele's movie.  But how, just how, did Ms. Gabriel set herself free from Georgina?

"When I studied at Julliard we did study how to energetically release things, and come back to ourselves.  So I think I did a lot of that.  But I don't know.  Maybe she's always going to be with me, which is frightening."

Betty Gabriel as Georgina in "Get Out".  Universal


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