LOS ANGELES (CBS SF “& AP) — Oakland native Mahershala Ali won the Academy Award for best supporting actor Sunday night for his “Moonlight” role.
Ali won for his first Oscar-nominated role, in which he plays a Miami drug dealer who mentors a young boy who is being teased and bullied.
His Bay Area roots run deep. He was born in Oakland, raised in Hayward and is a graduate of St. Mary’s College in Moraga.
Ali was nominated alongside Hell or High Water’s Jeff Bridges, Manchester by the Sea’s Lucas Hedges, Nocturnal Animals’ Michael Shannon and Lion’s Dev Patel.
It has been a breakout year for Ali, who starred on the Netflix series “Luke Cage” and also had a role in another Oscar-nominated film, “Hidden Figures.”
Ali paid tribute to his teachers and “Moonlight” director Barry Jenkins in his acceptance speech and thanked his wife, who gave birth to their daughter four days ago.
In an interview leading up to the Oscars, Ali said the nomination and awards season has been very different because he and his wife were awaiting the birth of their daughter.
“Having a child is the polar opposite experience of the awards season experience,” he said.”the awards-season experience … requires you to be out in the community, in the heart of the community, at the nucleus of the film community in a really committed way for about a six-month period of time.”
“Having a child requires you to nest, to be in your home, and to create and make your home and environment that is one that is potentially very welcoming and nurturing for a child…The pregnancy has been a real anchor for me to be able to check in.”