Oprah Winfrey's Teary Reaction to 12 Years a Slave Is "Surreal," Says Film's Director Steve McQueen

    Oprah, 12 Years a Slave

    Imagine being a filmmaker and finding out that Oprah can't even speak about a movie you've made without tearing up.

    Steve McQueen knows exactly how that feels. Winfrey was recently brought to tears while discussing the British director's Oscar favorite, 12 Years a Slave.

    "It feels great coming from Oprah," McQueen told me this weekend at the Governors Awards. "It's a big deal that she felt that way…It's one of those things when you make your work and you see the icons speak about it. It's surreal."

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    Kanye West, Hollywood Film Awards, Steve McQueen Kevin Winter/HFA2013/Getty Images

    Winfrey became visibly emotional during an interview with BBC Arts Editor Will Gompertz when their chat turned to 12 Years. "It's impossible for me to talk about it," she said. "I can't even talk about it. Devastating."

    Winfrey isn't the only A-lister who's been impressed by McQueen's film, which tells the true story of a free black man who was kidnapped and sold into slavery before the Civil War.

    Madonna was seen wiping away tears at its New York premiere.

    Kanye West is such a supporter that he flew to L.A. just hours before proposing to Kim Kardashian in San Francisco to help present an award to McQueen at the Hollywood Film Awards.

    Steve McQueen, Madonna Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images

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    The two men first met after the music superstar went to see one of McQueen's art shows in Europe.

    "He rang me and we just got on," McQueen said.

    Does he see acting in West's future?

    "Possibly," McQueen said with a laugh. "You never know. You never know."

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