Jharrel Jerome’s Performance In When They See Us Could Earn Him An Emmy
If you watched Ava DuVernay’s heartbreaking masterpiece When They See Us, then you already know Jharrel Jerome’s portrayal of Korey Wise stole the show. The second viewers finished watching the series, many rushed to their phones to tweet about how amazing Jerome’s performance was–and luckily, his emotional portrayal is being rewarded by people in the industry, as well.
The nominations for this year’s Emmy Awards were announced today, which is when news broke that the When They See Us star picked up a nomination for lead actor in a limited series for his turn as Korey Wise, which is only one of 16 total Emmy nominations for Ava DuVernay’s Netflix show as a whole.
Jharrel Jerome, who only broke onto the scene a few years ago with Barry Jenkins’ 2016 Oscar winner Moonlight, delivered an absolutely heart-wrenching performance as the only actor to portray his character’s journey from childhood into adulthood. Though the entire series was just as spectacular as it was difficult to watch, there’s no question that Jerome’s performance in the final installment of the series stole the show.
After news broke that he was nominated for an Emmy for his latest role, Jharrel spoke to The Hollywood Reporter about his emotions upon hearing the news and seeing all of the positive reactions on social media.
Check out what he had to say about Korey Wise, Ava DuVernay, Niecy Nash, and more down below.
On his relationship with Korey Wise:
“I’m going crazy over here. I feel like I’m on a whole other planet right now,” first-time Emmy nominee told The Hollywood Reporter on Tuesday morning. “The first time I met Korey, he took off the chain around his neck and put it on my neck and said, ‘You’re the king now. You’re Korey Wise.'”
On working with Ava DuVernay:
“I’m so proud of her. I was hoping that the Emmys would really receive When They See Us the way the world received it and would understand the importance of it. And just respect her brilliance and her integrity. The reason we did what we did was because of her.”
On Niecy Nash, who plays his mother in the series:
“Just to have shared those scenes with her and for both of us to come out with a nomination, that means everything in the world to me because we put our hearts and souls into those scenes.”
Jerome also shared that he thinks justice has finally come to fruition in light of the show’s repercussions in 2019:
” I think the project wasn’t so much about [the prosecutors] as much as it was about the five men,” he said. “I’m proud to know that these men are out there in the world. As for everyone else, it’s just the way the world responds, and however they respond is how they choose to respond. For me, I’m just happy with the smiles on the faces of these men and that’s what’s most important to me.”
Congratulations to Jharrel Jerome, Korey Wise and the Exonerated Five, Ava DuVernay, and the entire cast of When They See Us on their much deserved recognition.