Navigating Hollywood as a Black man has been historically difficult, but actor, activist and Louisiana native Wendell Pierce has long held to advice handed down to him by his parents, both of whom understood the importance of perseverance and character.
“Two moments come to mind when I think about the pride of being an African-American man,” he said. “One is with my mother and one is with my father. My mother passed on a story to me. A mantra that has become a part of my life that my grandfather told her,” he continued.
That advice? Never say you “can’t do anything.”
“Because can’t died three days before the creation of the world,” Pierce said of his mother’s words. “So there’s no such thing as can’t.”
Her words have surely guided Pierce, who has succeeded in pulling in huge Hollywood roles without sacrificing his integrity.
Check out the video above to see what powerful words Pierce’s father — who recently celebrated his 90th birthday — gave him for the ultimate lesson on commitment, love and family values that rivals the stereotypical narratives of Black Americans in the media.
VIDEO SOURCE: Wells Fargo/Interactive One