Backstage at the #Oscars, #GreenBook's Nick Vallelonga says Don Shirley asked him not to reach out to the Shirley family: "I didn't even know they really existed until after we were making the film." https://t.co/ZuoOGuBHmV pic.twitter.com/N3gOfXcmFi— Hollywood Reporter (@THR) February 25, 2019
Nick Vallelonga told reporters about why he didn't thank Don Shirley onstage and why he didn't contact Shirley's family, "You get nervous up there. Mahershala thanked Don. If you’re discussing the Don Shirley family thing, that falls on me. Don Shirley himself told me to not talk to anyone... he was an amazing man. He told me — if you’re going to tell the story, you tell it from your father and me. And also he told me, 'Don’t tell it until I pass away.'"
He added, “We invited them to all the screenings and to discussions. I was personally not allowed to speak to his family, per Don Shirley’s wishes... Don Shirley and my father had an amazing story together.”