Trevante Rhodes stars in ‘12 Strong’

Katt Williams | 1/26/2018, 6 a.m.
Trevante Rhodes talks about his latest outing as Sergeant Ben Milo in “12 Strong,” a docudrama about the top secret ...
Trevante Rhodes stars in “12 Strong.” Alcon Entertainment

What is your opinion of colorblind casting?

TR: I always hope that Hollywood casts the best person for a role regardless of what they look like, regarless of their skin color, gender or sexual orientation. And that’s been the case in my own experience. I’m very appreciative of where things are at compared to twenty years ago, and I hope they continue to improve in a rapid manner, because we have all kinds of people putting out incredible material and doing phenomenal work.

You seem to have gone straight from athlete to acting very quickly and very successfully. Did you study acting in college?

TR: No, I just took one theater class during my senior year to fulfill a degree requirement, Kam. A professor did suggest that I pursue it further. Then a casting director spotted me on my campus, and I got bitten by the acting bug. And I saw that if you put in the effort, you’d get a certain reward out of it. Because of that, I love acting!

What was it like to be in the Oscar-winning Best Picture, “Moonlight?”

TR: I was really happy that we won because of all the work everybody put into the film. Barry [director Barry Jenkins] puts an incredible amount of love into everything he does. I also like the fact that a great work of art could win, regardless of who you are or what you look like. I hope winning will help Barry get more opportunities.

What I found incredible about “Moonlight” was how I barely noticed that the two main characters were each played by three different people. He somehow made the transitions, as they grew older, seamless.

TR: I think that’s a testament to not only Barry’s brilliant writing and directing, but to the great casting and acting and the beautiful cinematography. Normally, people think it’s crazy to have different people play the same person. But here, all the elements combined to create a masterpiece.