Mary J. Blige ‘can’t stop crying all these happy tears’ over her two ‘Mudbound’ Oscar nods

Mary J. Blige woke up to good news on Tuesday.
(Jay L. Clendenin / Los Angeles Times)

Musician Mary J. Blige earned her first-ever Oscar nominations on Tuesday for supporting actress and original song for Dee Rees’ World War II drama “Mudbound.”

The nine-time Grammy Award winner reflected on her latest achievements in a morning chat with the Los Angeles Times.

Two-time Oscar nominee. You now get to add that to your resumé.


This feels awesome. It feels so good. I can’t tell you… I feel so overjoyed. I can’t stop crying all these happy tears. Just so grateful and thankful. God is the absolute greatest.

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How has it been being on this awards-season run with recognition after recognition for your acting and music?

It feels really good to be recognized with all these nominations because it shows that someone recognizes my hard work and the dedication and the time and how serious I’m taking this craft. That means a lot because I never wanted to take this lightly. I never wanted to just get a role because it’s easy for celebrities to get a role because they’re celebrities. I didn’t want people to look at me like I didn’t take it seriously — because you have the Queen Latifahs and the Taraji [P. Henson]s and the Angela Bassetts and the Viola Davises who worked really hard to pave the way for us. I really want them to be proud of me as well.

It just feels really good to run into Meryl Streep at the Golden Globes and have her say, “Oh, my God. That work you did.” I’m like, “What?!”


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Were you sleeping when the nominations came out?

In my bed, yes. I’m sleeping at that time. Then my phone rings and it’s my publicist, and anytime I see her name, I know something has happened. (Laughs) I answered the phone and I’m screaming and she’s screaming. It was a scream fest.

Black Twitter is so elated about your nominations. I saw someone tweet that they’re “calling in black” at work today and are going to play your music all day.

Oh, wow. (Laughs) I love my fans.

Your fans are dedicated.

My fans… I love them and appreciate them. I don’t even think they know how deep the appreciation goes, because in my hardest times, they’ve been there. When it’s seemed like so many people had turned their back on me, my real, true fans have been there. I’m so grateful for them, seriously.