Two black actors shine at Canadian Screen Awards

Adrian Holmes and Stephan James

Two black actors -Stephan James and Adrian Holmes – were among the winners at the Canadian Screen Awards 2017 held on Sunday night at Toronto’s Sony Centre for the Performing Arts. James won the “ Best Actor “ award for his role in the film Race, a biopic of the American Olympic champion Jesse Owens, and Holmes who leads the cast in the critically acclaimed television series 19-2 ,went home with the “Best Actor in a Drama Series” award. Each year, the Canadian Screen Awards honours the best in Canadian film and television with winners in the Creative Fiction and Non-Fiction categories. Discussing Race, James said learning to run like Jesse Owens required reprogramming his body and mind. “ I had to make sure I was paying attention to the details in how he (Jesse) ran, how he started, how he finished and what his face looked like,” the Toronto-born actor pointed out. James noted that “Jesse had a terrible habit of popping up right after he started his race and it’s something he fixed over time, but I had to learn the wrong way to do it and I had to learn the right way to do it because you had to see both in the film.
“If you asked me to sprint, I’d probably sprint a little bit like him just because I’m so used to running like him.” Holmes who was born in Wales of Barbadian parents and grew up in Vancouver, has over 100 television credits, including Arrow and the comedy Impastor. Tatiana Maslany won awards for both “Best Actress” for her role in The Other Half and for “
Best Actress in a Drama Series” in Orphan Black which won the “Best Drama Series “ award. Highlights from this year’s show included comedian Dave Chappelle honouring Just for Laughs with the Icon Award, Tantoo Cardinal receiving the Earle Grey Award and stage and screen icon Christopher Plummer receiving the Lifetime Achievement Award.