Celebrity Gossip

2014 Tony nominations: Denzel Washington snubbed, black actress to make Tony history

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The 2014 Tony nominations were announced, and some of our favorite stars of the stage and screen have a reason to celebrate.

Five-time Tony winner Audra McDonald received a nomination for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play for her role as Billie Holiday in Lady Day at Emerson’s Bar & Grill. If McDonald wins, she’ll make history as the first performer to ever take home a Tony in all four acting categories, as well as the actor with the most Tony Award wins.

McDonald has won for featured actress in a musical twice, in Carousel (1994) and Ragtime (1998). She also scored two wins for featured actress in a play, in Master Class (1996) and A Raisin in the Sun (2004). And in 2012, she won for lead actress in a musical in The Gershwins’ Porgy and Bess.

A Raisin in the Sun was nominated for Best Revival of a Play, along with LaTanya Richardson Jackson for Best Performance by an Actress in a Leading Role in a Play. Sophie Okonedo and Anika Noni Rose both received nods for Best Performance by an Actress in a Featured Role in a Play.

Kenny Leon also received a nomination for Best Direction of a Play for A Raisin in the Sun.

One major oversight this year is Denzel Washington, who was snubbed for a lead actor Tony nomination for his part in A Raisin in the Sun.

The 59-year-old actor appeared in Kenny Leon’s revival of Fences in 2010, a performance which won him the Tony Award for Actor in a Leading Role in a Play.

In February, the Oscar winner spoke with theGrio about joining the revival of A Raisin in the Sun and discussed meeting with play’s original star, Sidney Poitier, to discuss his role.

“I went over to his house a few times, and it was interesting because he started talking about it and he was like, ‘well I’m not gonna tell you what to do,’ and then he started talking about it more, and the next thing I know he’s standing up and starting to walk around,” Washington said. “He’s still passionate about it. He couldn’t remember the lines but he was very passionate about it, and that was exciting to watch.”

The Broadway revival of A Raisin in the Sun comes to an end June 15.

Tune in Sunday, June 8, at 8/7c, on CBS, for the live broadcast of the 2014 Tony Awards.

Follow Chris Witherspoon on Twitter at @WitherspoonC

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