Morris Chestnut was on the scene for this year’s Essence Music Festival, hosting a party and appearing at speaking engagements. The beloved actor will star in “The Best Man: Holiday” later this year, and took time out to discuss the movie and his experience as a dark-skinned man in Hollywood with Hello Beautiful.

When asked if dark men face the same type of discrimination that dark-skinned women like Gabrielle Union speak of, he said “You’re talking to the right person because when I was coming up, it was all about Prince, Michael Jackson, Jesse Jackson. So it was really difficult for me coming up. Matter of fact, my first production company was called ‘Dark Skin Productions,” because it was difficult breaking in. And then, Wesley Snipes broke through and he opened it up for us dark-skinned brothers. Some of my boys, Shemar Moore, they’re light-skinned and they get theirs too. There’s enough for everybody.”

He also spoke about his favorite scenes in both “Best Man” movies:

“What has been your favorite scene to film in The Best Man 1 and 2, and why?”

“There was a scene in the first one with the bachelor party. We had a good time that day. Just because all of the fellas were having a good time to see each other laugh, that’s it! [laughs] No, it was the card scene. We rehearsed that scene a lot before we shot it and once we shot it, things started happening organically. And we had a really good time and it ended up with myself and Terrence going at each other and that kind of just happened, so it was a favorite.”

“The second movie we had a great time at the pool scene with Eddie. It’s like a mob shakedown kind of scene. We did at the spur of the moment. Terrence Howard came up with it because he was high. And it worked. You’ll see him smoking in the movie.”

Check out more of the interview here.

What do you think of Morris’ comments on breaking into the industry as a dark-skinned man? Why did the pendulum swing for them if the industry wasn’t as welcoming at first? Can the same happen for dark-skinned women?

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