Andre Holland

  • American actor
  • Born December 28, 1979

André Holland (born December 28, 1979) is an American actor. He received several accolades and widespread notice in 2016 for his performance as Kevin in the Academy Award-winning film Moonlight. Throughout his career, Holland has acted in several film, television, and theatre productions. On television, he has starred as Dr. Algernon Edwards in the Cinemax series The Knick (2014–2015) and as Matt Miller in the FX series American Horror Story: Roanoke (2016). He portrayed politician and activist Andrew Young in the 2014 film Selma and sportswriter Wendell Smith in the 2013 film 42.

It's not every day you get to be in a movie about Jackie Robinson, so you want to do it as right as you can.

If someone wanted to do a biopic about me, I would like for them to consult my family.

Never lived in L.A. I've always done the New York thing.

In '42,' it's like the '40s where racial equality had come into the consciousness of a lot of people, whereas in the 1900s it was sort of a new thing.

Shakespeare is definitely my first love.

I did my undergrad at Florida State, got a Bachelor's, and then I got my Masters in Acting at NYU. So I've spent a lot of time in the classroom.

I'm the old-school, letter-writing romantic. I know it's out of style, and not a lot of women go for that these days, but that's what I go for.

I read a lot of W.E.B. Du Bois, who wrote 'The Souls of Black Folk.'

My goal has always been to try to live up to every ounce of my potential. For me, that means working with the best people and working with the best material.

I do enjoy history. That's one of the things that I love about acting is you get a chance to really dive into history and develop a real personal opinion about it.

With theater, depending on the audience, the show is different every night and really requires your constant concentration. With film, it's more possible to focus for shorter, more intense bits of time.

Frankly, I think that's something that black people in America have often done - finding ways under very, very difficult circumstances to be subversive, but also to push things forward. And I think that applies to music. I think it applies to dance. I think it applies to a number of things.

Theater is where I have the most experience and feel most at home, but I'm really, really loving film.

When I was in school, and even after, I did a lot of classic plays, and I guess it sort of extended into film.

I studied acting in NYU's graduate program, in which we covered everything from Ibsen and Chekov to August Wilson and David Mamet.

I've lost friends over texting because I'm so bad at it.

I started out doing a lot of theater, a lot of Shakespeare, classic plays.

A lot of people in the movie business don't have a point of reference for me; nobody really knows who I am.

'The Knick' is set in New York during the 1990s, and it takes place around a hospital called The Knickerbocker. It's about a team of surgeons and nurses who are on the cutting edge of medicine.

Everybody gathered at my Aunt Hannah's house, and we sat around and talked, ate, drank and told lies. That's what people do, and I just sat there and listened.

With 'Selma,' I grew up in Alabama, 45 minutes away from Selma. I have gone to that commemorative march many times with my parents.

I think that a man should not be shy; you should say what you really think and feel - put it out there.

Whenever I have a play or opening or anything going on in my career, my parents always come up and see it.

I need to find those projects more often: the ones that really, really speak to me. I do better work in those situations and have a better time.

I've written a couple of scripts. Actually, a pilot. I'm not sure I'm allowed to say, but it's a comedy about three young men in New York City, one of whom may or may not be a romantic like me.

I think that's what makes characters interesting - when you paint a person into a corner, and you see what they do to get out of that corner. It's what makes drama drama.

I grew up in Alabama in a very small town and didn't have access to the finest of anything, really. But my mother was the kind of woman who just wanted us, me and my sisters, to be exposed to any and anything she could find.

When you live in an environment where you aren't allowed to be fully who you are, you aren't taken seriously, and you aren't respected. What that actually does to a person's confidence and psyche is really fascinating to me.