Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson took the industry by storm when he uncovered the archival footage from the greatest Black festival nobody knew existed for 50 years and unpacked it in the acclaimed documentary, Summer Of Soul (…Or, When the Revolution Could Not Be Televised).
Now, the award-winning film has snagged its biggest award yet. Questlove took the Oscar for Best Documentary (Feature) at the 94th annual Academy Awards on Sunday night (March 27). Despite his moment being briefly overshadowed by the incident between Chris Rock and Will Smith, Questlove and the Summer Of Soul team took the stage to accept the coveted trophy.
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He first acknowledged his fellow nominees and continued, “It’s not lost on me that the story of the Harlem Cultural Festival should’ve been something that my beautiful mother and my [late father] should’ve taken me to when I was 5 years old.”
Though verbally overwhelmed with emotion, he added that the moment wasn’t about him. “This is about marginalized people in Harlem that needed to heal from pain. Just know that in 2022, this is not just a 1969 story about marginalized people in Harlem.” He shared that he will “thank everyone properly” offstage due to him being appropriately flustered.
This Oscar win lands Questlove halfway towards EGOT status as he is already a five-time Grammy winner.
Summer Of Soul is now streaming on Hulu. Watch the full trailer below and check out Questlove’s full acceptance speech below.