For Hudlin, "Django" represents the kind of film he'd like to see more of: original movies with multi-ethnic casts that don't reuse well-trod genre tropes.
"Django" goes against the conventional thinking that neither films starring black actors nor Westerns can find large audiences abroad. It's been a huge success internationally, taking in more than $187 million.
"If those historical models were always correct, we wouldn't be talking right now," says Hudlin. "Those films travel because the world is represented in those films. The audiences are voting with their dollar saying: We want more diversity."
The success of "Django" has already spawned much chatter about a possible sequel, which Hudlin grants he's had "extensive conversations" with Tarantino about. But for now, he's planning to just enjoy the Oscars, which he'll attend with his wife and mother. With Ben Affleck's "Argo" the generally accepted front-runner, Hudlin says he's not "polishing my acceptance speech," but proudly going as only the fourth black best picture nominee.
"Hopefully," he says, "there will be a day soon where we don't count anymore."