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Denzel Washington gets emotional after hearing what his son said about him

His son praised him after he was named the greatest actor of the 21st century.
/ Source: TODAY

Denzel Washington got teary-eyed when he heard some sweet words of praise from his son, actor John David Washington.

The Oscar winner, 66, was doing an interview with Access Hollywood for his new movie, “The Little Things,” when host Sibley Scoles shared what his son, 36, had recently said about him.

His son was reacting to the news that his dad was just named the greatest actor of the 21st century by The New York Times.

"It’s about time,” he said in an earlier interview with Access Hollywood. “I think he is one of the greatest to ever do it, so it was a very proud moment for our entire family."

Washington got choked up when he heard his son’s words read back to him and took a long pause to collect himself.

"Wow, I'm speechless,” he said. “I forgot what the question was, but I'm speechless. I didn't know he said that."

The proud dad also took a moment to shout out his daughter Olivia.

“Watch out for his sister. His sister’s a great actor. Olivia Washington,” he said.

Washington has four children with his wife of nearly four decades, actress and singer Pauletta Washington: John David, 36, Katia, 33, and twins Malcolm and Olivia, 29.

47th AFI Life Achievement Award Honoring Denzel Washington - Arrivals
Malcolm Washington, Katia Washington, Pauletta Washington and Denzel Washington attend the AFI Life Achievement Award honoring Denzel Washington in 2019.Amy Sussman / Getty Images for WarnerMedia

John David Washington has risen to fame in his own right thanks to his roles in 2018’s “BlacKkKlansman” and the 2020 sci-fi thriller “Tenet.” He is also starring alongside Zendaya in the upcoming Netflix drama “Malcolm & Marie.”

It sounds like he and his dad have always been supportive of each other. John David recalled his parents’ emotional reaction when he was nominated for a Golden Globe for “BlacKkKlansman.”

“My father woke me up. He’s like, ‘It’s time, it’s time, let’s go!’” he told the Los Angeles Times in 2018. “We caught it on NBC. We obviously cheered when we heard Adam [Driver’s] name and Spike [Lee’s] name. And then it happened; I was overjoyed. My dad and I embraced each other so tightly. My mom is on the way to Chicago to audition for ‘Hamlet,’ so we called her and had a prayer session and we were crying.”

Hollywood Foreign Press Association's Grants Banquet - Arrivals
John David Washington, 36, is a celebrated actor in his own right.Emma McIntyre / Getty Images

John David has been spending lots of quality time with his parents lately. Like many, he moved back home for a while during the coronavirus pandemic.

During an interview in September on “Jimmy Kimmel Live,” he told guest host Samuel L. Jackson that his “chore” at home “was to make sure I’m down for dinner in time.”

When Jackson argued that this isn’t technically a chore, John David clarified that he also did some of the cooking at home.

“There you go, I earned my keep that way,” he said.