Oscar-winner Denzel Washington took a year out of filming to prepare for his role in 1992 biopic Malcolm X. Washington, 51, admits he was so worried about perfecting his performance as the African-American civil rights campaigner, he decided to devote a year of his life to researching Malcolm X, who was assassinated in 1965. Malcolm X director SPIKE LEE says, "Every day, Malcolm X just grows in stature. I mean, that performance... Denzel, Mr Washington, stopped working on other stuff for a year before, to prepare for that film." Washington explains, "Well, you know, it was a lot of pressure man! But I give Spike the credit just for bravery. "It's the mutual admiration society, because I'd say this: I didn't understand what a film-maker has to go through."