Denzel Washington gave actor son John David Washington 'freedom to fail'

·1-min read
John David Washington has revealed the advice he was given by his famous dad Denzel Washington. credit:Bang Showbiz
John David Washington has revealed the advice he was given by his famous dad Denzel Washington. credit:Bang Showbiz

Denzel Washington's son John David Washington has credited his famous father with giving him the "freedom to fail" as he embarked on an acting career.

The Oscar-winner's 38-year-old son is a former professional football player but gave up his sporting dreams to follow his dad to Hollywood with a role in TV drama 'Ballers' before landing parts in movies such as 'BlacKkKlansman' and 'Tenet' - and he's now revealed Denzel taught him how to deal with rejection.

When asked what he learned from his dad, John replied: "The freedom to fail, to find out, flourish in that failure. In that being uncomfortable, you'll find the greatest parts of yourself as an artist."

He's about to make his Broadway debut in August Wilson's 'The Piano Lesson' - 12 years after his dad won a Tony Award from his role in the playwright's Pulitzer Prize-winning 1985 work 'Fences' .

Speaking at a press conference for the play, John said: "Am I nervous when [my father is] watching me on stage? I don't know yet. Maybe. I might not even be thinking about it because I'm thinking about the notes from my director. I don't know if I have time to be nervous about what he thinks."

As well as starring in 'Fences' on Broadway, Denzel went on to star in and direct a 2016 film version of the play which won him an Oscar nomination for Best Actor.

The younger Washington will star alongside another screen star - Samuel L. Jackson - in 'The Piano Lesson' which opens on Broadway in October. John is playing the role of Boy Willie which was originated by Jackson when the play was first performed back in 1987.