So many incredible and unexpected things have happened to Lee Daniels, director of “Precious: Based on the Novel ‘Push’ By Sapphire,” in the past few years — from securing financing to make a film about a 350-pound illiterate teenage girl who is pregnant for the second time by her father (not an easy sell), to winning three awards at Sundance, to then receiving the backing of Hollywood heavyweights Tyler Perry and Oprah Winfrey — that he doesn’t even know how to form the words. “How do I even articulate it?” he asks rhetorically. “When I do films, I expect them to go straight to DVD. Then Oprah is on the phone with me? How do I process that?”


He better learn quickly — the buzz around “Precious” as a front-runner for an Academy Award is deafening.


“It’s hard to embrace love sometimes,” says Daniels. “My friends are telling me that I really need to hang onto these moments and embrace them. But [at screenings] the applause is so loud and embarrassing that I have to leave.”