Stars including JK Rowling and Jordan Peele have praised John Boyega for his emotional speech at a Black Lives Matter protest in London on Wednesday.
“Black lives have always mattered,” said the Star Wars actor. “We have always been important. We have always succeeded regardless.”
He paid tribute to African-American George Floyd, who died in police custody on 25 May – but said his comments could damage his career.
Instead, Hollywood offered its support.
Boyega, who was born in London to parents of Nigerian descent, observed: “I don’t know if I’m going to have a career after this.”
Film maker Matthew Cherry, who won an Oscar this year for animated short film Hair Love – about an African-American father styling his daughter’s hair for the first time, added his support.
A tearful Boyega, who starred as Finn in the latest Star Wars trilogy, made his comments while addressing demonstrators in London’s Hyde Park.
Floyd died in Minneapolis last week after a police officer knelt on his neck for almost nine minutes. Derek Chauvin has been charged with second-degree murder, while three other officers face charges of aiding and abetting murder.