Morgan Freeman on the highs and lows of producing

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Morgan Freeman discusses his favorite film, the 2009 Clint Eastwood directed Invictus, in which he nabbed an Oscar nomination for his role as Nelson Mandela. “It’s one of my diamond encrusted moments in life,” Freeman said, alongside his longtime producing partner Lori McCreary at the Producers Guild of America’s eighth annual Produced by Conference held on Saturday, June 4, reports Deadline. “My favorite director directed the film, Clint. I had the most fun playing Nelson Mandela than I ever had working on film, and I really really love what I do. When we shot the last frame, all the actors, everyone on set said, ‘Let’s do it again.’”

Oddly enough, the project helmed by Freeman’s production company, Revelations Entertainment, barely made its big screen debut. In fact, the Hollywood veteran revealed it was a challenge to get any studio interest in the sports drama, though Eastwood had just released his 2003 film Mystic River followed by his 2004 Oscar-winning film Million Dollar Baby. “Nothing good comes easy in this business. If it comes easy, be suspect,” Freeman continued before an audience of 400 people.

The 79-year-old went on to discuss the meaning behind his production company, Revelations, which McCreary disclosed was originally called Genesis, stating it was birthed to reveal truths. “I grew up a movie, movie, movie fan. No Black people in these movies! No Asian people,” Freeman said adding that he launched Revelations “to be revelatory” and “reveal some truths” of people of color not always seen on screen.

After nearly two decades, it’s safe to say Freeman’s reaped the fruits of his partnership with McCreary, producing successes like “Through The Wormhole with Morgan Freeman” and the CBS drama “Madame Secretary,” modeled after recent female Secretaries of State Hillary Clinton, Condoleezza Rice and Madeleine Albright.

The conversation took an unusual turn, however, when Freeman recalled his first encounter with McCreary, saying, “She had on a dress cut to here.” “He’s not a pig, I promise,” interjected moderator and producer Mark Gordon, before adding, “maybe he is,” reports THR.

“She doesn’t want to be thought of as a pretty face,” said Freeman of McCreary. “She wants to be thought of as serious. But you can’t get away from the short dresses.” Although his partner didn’t immediately react to the comment, Gordon suggested the actor’s comments could be construed as sexist and misogynistic. “Sexist? Yeah,” Freeman replied, “but I’m not misogynistic.” He went on to praise McCreary as a “good person” and “a workaholic.” A sentiment that appeared to be mutual, with McCreary describing Freeman as “trustworthy” and having “integrity.”

In conclusion, Freeman provided a few words of caution for those who may be overextending themselves. “You push the snowball, you push the snowball, and now it’s at the top of the hill, and then you can’t control the slide down,” he said. “The next thing you know, you’ve outgrown yourself.”

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