Tommy Davidson on Playing Sammy Davis Jr., Killer Karaoke, and Whether Crack Really Kills
That's great and all, but how much longer must we wait before we finally get Damon Wayans in the Medgar Evers story?
"You're gonna wait a long time for that," Davidson told Cultist in advance of his three night stand at the Miami Improv, starting Thursday.
Let's all lock hands and see if a little positive thinking won't help. And while we're at it, spare a little for Davidson, whose film isn't a done deal yet. He explained, "We're adapting a book to a screenplay and then trying to make a movie. It's difficult. I have as much a chance as I did making it as a standup, so I'm just really working hard on it."
Davidson's impersonation is a vehicle for jokes, yes, but it's also a tribute to a man that inspired him in very concrete ways.
"Well, he's the greatest entertainer who ever lived. He was an eclectic American and I loved his humanity and that he didn't have a hateful bone in his body. He broke the color line for entertainers in this country."
In Living Color itself was a massive post-racial success, but Davidson saw color lines differently long before joining the cast. He was adopted by a white couple.
"They call it a point of view, when you're trying to sell an idea to people who don't know shit in entertainment. But for the layman," Davidson said, "the way I see things is that love is the power. There was nothing that separated black from white in my family. It's the world that saw my family as black and white."
It was an experience that has found Davidson firmly in favor of adoptions by homosexual couples.
"Anyone who has love to give a child, that child deserves it. It's really simple math. You've got a child with no love and a couple wants to give it to them. There it is. It doesn't matter about their sexual orientation.
"I see things different from the way the world sees them. But I was fortunate to be raised by a white woman from Wyoming at a time when the whole country was coming together. Through violence, through pain. I've got a cowboy grandfather from Wyoming, a Native American grandfather from Mississippi. I have a brother, Michael, who died from AIDS 20 years ago, a gay white male. I 've got all these people who I'm composed of. And I'm not the only one."