Oprah Winfrey was slammed in a radio interview by her Color Purple co-star Rae Dawn Chong, with the actress calling Winfrey a "field n*gger" and "house n*gger." Speaking to Matty P's Radio Happy Hour, Chong also called Winfrey a "biotch" and "brown-noser" before repeatedly calling her "n*gger." Chong said she felt justified in calling Winfrey a "n*gger" because the talk show icon treated her poorly on the set of their next film together, the 1985 movie Commando.
Declaring that Winfrey "wasn't having me" on the set of Commando nearly 30 years ago, Chong called Winfrey a "field n*gger" due to what she felt is her unattractive appearance. "She looks like 60 years ago, she would have been a house keeper luckily. She would not have been a house n*gger. She would have been a field n*gger," said Chong. "She's so enormously insecure ... she wants to be beautiful. All the power in the world ... and she only wants something that is chemical, purely impossible."
Chong concluded the interview with a final attack on Winfrey that some felt almost rivaled her "n*gger" comment. "No matter how vile she is, you kinda gotta go, 'hello hats off,'" she said. "You've done an amazing thing. You have actually shifted the DNA of the universe."
Winfrey has not responded to the racial remarks made by Chong. It's unclear how the N-word attacks will affect Chong's career, but using the word has certainly not helped others in the spotlight. Paula Deen lost her Food Network show and was dropped by several sponsors when she admitted under oath last month to using the N-word. Mel Gibson's career has also yet to recover after audio recordings of him using the N-word surfaced in 2010. Seinfeld actor Michael Richards has seen his career fizzle as well after an N-word-filled rant at an audience member during a stand-up comedy performance in 2006.
The talk show icon admitted last year that she was called the N-word repeatedly after appearing on Ellen DeGeneres' sitcom in the mid-'90s, shortly after DeGeneres came out as gay. Winfrey played her therapist on the show, but told The Hollywood Reporter that racist viewers sent her hateful letters and phone calls afterwards. "It always turn to race," she said. "I got all of the, 'N*gger, go back to Africa. Who do you think you are?' It didn't occur to me that there would be a backlash."
Chong went on to work steadily for more than 20 years after The Color Purple, but her film career has dried out in recent years Since 2007, she has only had small roles in a handful of low-budget films and TV movies.