Photo of Oscar statuetteThe film “Twelve Years a Slave” received the Best Picture award at the 2014 Academy Awards on Sunday evening.

Chris Chalk, a 2001 alumnus of UNCG Theatre, is featured in the film.

He plays the character Clemens Ray, who was included in a clip compilation of great movie scenes about an hour into the telecast.

The actor spoke of some of his gut-wrenching “Twelve Years a Slave” scenes in a recent LA Times article.

Chalk’s screen acting career so far has included such productions as Showtime’s “Homeland,” HBO’s “The Newsroom” and the film “Rent.” He won a Theatre World Award for his Broadway debut in “Fences.”

He returns to UNCG on occasion to conduct master classes and speak with students.

UNCG Theatre Professor Michael Flannery – who as a UNCG graduate student was a cast mate of Chalk’s and later taught him in a class – was pulling hard for his fellow alumnus and the film. He explains that Chalk was “such a vital part of the theatre department when he was in school.” He adds that in the years since, “He’s been a great friend to the school.”

The Oscar-winning movie is based on the historical 1853 narrative “Twelve Years a Slave,” which UNCG professor Dr. Noelle Morrissette spoke about in a recent article. In the narrative, Solomon Northup writes of being a free man from New York state taken hostage and sold into slavery, where he labors and survives under brutal conditions for 12 years in Louisiana. His freedom is finally restored.

Visual copyright A.M.P.A.S.®