Cultura y conciencia

Dominican Actor Jharrel Jerome Makes Emmy History for Role in “When They See Us”

Media, Notis, NewsNelson SantanaComment

By Nelson Santana
September 24, 2019

Actor Jharrel Jerome, of Dominican descent, made history this past Sunday night at the Emmy Awards when he nabbed the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie at the 71st Emmy Awards at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, California. Jerome received the award for his role in Ava DuVernay’s miniseries When They See Us a documentary series on the Central Park 5.

Not only did Jerome play Central Park Five exoneree Korey Wise in the series, but he attended the awards ceremony with Wise. Wise was the oldest of the five teenagers accused of raping a white female jogger in Central Park in a case that was flawed from the start and immediately turned into a media show that manipulated public opinion. Sixteen years of age at the time of the accusation, Wise served 12 years in prison. He and the other four men of color were exonerated in 2002 when new evidence emerged.

In the Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie category, Jerome edged Mahershala Ali (True Detective), Hugh Grant (A Very English Scandal), Jared Harris (Chernobyl), Sam Rockwell (Fosse/Verdon), and Benicio del Toro (Escape at Dannemora). During his acceptance speech, Jerome said, “I feel like I should just be in the Bronx right now, chillin,’ waiting for my mom's cooking but I’m here.”


A Voice for the Those Whose Voices Were Silenced

When They See Us made national headlines as one of the must-see options on television this past summer. The Netflix original miniseries aims to tell a narrative different than the one told during and after the false imprisonment of the innocent teenagers by exploring the lives and families of Antron McCray, Kevin Richardson, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana, and Korey Wise. Central Park Five prosecutor Linda Fairstein claimed that the miniseries set out to defame her, stating it is “so full of distortions and falsehoods as to be an outright fabrication,” according to CNN. Soon after the release of When They See Us, online petitions flooded the Internet including social media, along with the hashtag #CancelLindaFairstein, calling for the boycott of Fairstein’s books and her removal from prominent boards. Although she fought back criticism, Fairsten resigned from several boards including Safe Horizon and Joyful Heart Foundation.

Days after the attack on the jogger, President Donald Trump paid full-page advertisements in several major newspapers, including The New York Times, where he advocated for the death penalty. The advertisement coupled with the role the racist, conservative media helped create hysteria and fear. Even after the exoneration of the five teenagers, Trump continued to claim they were guilty.

More About Jharrel

Jerome grew up in the Bronx to Dominican parents. A native New Yorker, he attended Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School and went to Ithaca College for undergraduate studies. While a student at Ithaca, he was cast as bisexual teenager Kevin in the Oscar-winning film Moonglight. According to Moonlight director Barry Jenkins, “I didn’t have to direct anything. When you watch Jharrel in that movie, he’s not a guy who’s been over-rehearsing. That’s a dude learning by doing. It’s amazing.” When interviewed by the Los Angeles Times, When They See Us director DuVernay stated, “The world is his oyster… But he lives in a world that doesn’t see him in the same way it sees Ansel Elgort or Timothée Chalamet. My highest hope is that the industry rushes to his talent.”

Some Social Media Reactions

View this post on Instagram

from the bottom of my heart, thank you all 💛

A post shared by Jharrel Jerome (@jharreljerome) on

Complete List of Emmy Winners:  

Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series

Stephen Root, Barry

Henry Winkler, Barry

Anthony Carrigan, Barry

Alan Arkin, The Kominsky Method

Tony Shalhoub, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel **WINNER**

Tony Hale, Veep


Supporting Actress in a Comedy Series

Sarah Goldberg, Barry

Sian Clifford, Fleabag

Olivia Colman, Fleabag

Betty Gilpin, GLOW

Kate McKinnon, Saturday Night Live

Alex Borstein, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel **WINNER**

Marin Hinkle, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Anna Chlumsky, Veep


Writing for a Comedy Series

Alec Berg and Bill Hader, Barry

Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Fleabag **WINNER**

Maya Erskine, Anna Konkle and Stacy Osei-Kuffour, Pen15

Leslye Headland, Natasha Lyonne and Amy Poehler, Russian Doll

David Mandel, Veep

Josh Siegal and Dylan Morgan, The Good Place

Allison Silverman, Russian Doll


Director for a Comedy Series

Alec Berg, Barry

Harry Bradbeer, Fleabag **WINNER**

Mark Cendrowski, The Big Bang Theory

Bill Hader, Barry

Daniel Palladino, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Amy Sherman-Palladino, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel


Lead Actor in a Comedy Series

Anthony Anderson, Black-ish

Don Cheadle, Black Monday

Ted Danson, The Good Place

Michael Douglas, The Kominsky Method

Bill Hader, Barry **WINNER**

Eugene Levy, Schitt’s Creek


Lead Actress in a Comedy Series

Christina Applegate, Dead To Me

Rachel Brosnahan, The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Veep

Natasha Lyonne, Russian Doll

Catherine O’Hara, Schitt’s Creek

Phoebe Waller-Bridge, Fleabag **WINNER**


Outstanding Reality Competition Series

Amazing Race

American Ninja Warrior

Nailed It

RuPaul’s Drag Race **WINNER**

Top Chef

The Voice


Supporting Actress in a Limited Series or Movie

Emily Watson, Chernobyl

Margaret Qualley, Fosse/Verdon

Patricia Clarkson, Sharp Objects

Patricia Arquette, The Act **WINNER**

Marsha Stephanie Blake, When They See Us

Vera Farmiga, When They See Us


Directing for a Limited Series

Ava DuVernay, When They See Us

Thomas Kail, Fosse/Verdon

Stephen Frears, A Very English Scandal

Johan Renck, Chernobyl **WINNER**

Ben Stiller, Escape at Dannemora

Jessica Yu, Fosse/Verdon


Supporting Actor in a Limited Series or Movie

Ben Whishaw, A Very English Scandal **WINNER**

Stellan Skarsgård, Chernobyl

Paul Dano, Escape at Dannemora

John Leguizamo, When They See Us

Michael K. Williams, When They See Us

Asante Blackk, When They See Us


Writing for a Limited Series, Movie or Drama

Russell T Davies, A Very English Scandal

Ava DuVernay and Michael Starrbury, When They See Us

Brett Johnson and Michael Tolkin, Escape at Dannemora

Brett Johnson, Michael Tolkin and Jerry Stahl, Escape at Dannemora

Steven Levenson and Joel Fields, Fosse/Verdon

Craig Mazin, Chernobyl **WINNER**


Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie

Mahershala Ali, True Detective

Benicio Del Toro, Escape at Dannemora

Hugh Grant, A Very English Scandal

Jared Harris, Chernobyl

Jharrel Jerome, When They See Us **WINNER**

Sam Rockwell, Fosse/Verdon


Outstanding Television Movie

Black Mirror: Bandersnatch **WINNER**



King Lear

My Dinner with Hervé


Lead Actress in a Limited Series or Movie

Amy Adams, Sharp Objects

Patricia Arquette, Escape at Dannemora

Aunjanue Ellis, When They See us

Joey King, The Act

Niecy Nash, When They See Us

Michelle Williams, Fosse/Verdon **WINNER**


Outstanding Limited Series

Chernobyl **WINNER**

Escape at Dannemora


Sharp Objects

When They See Us

Writing for a Variety Series

Documentary Now!

Full Frontal With Samantha Bee

Last Week Tonight With John Oliver **WINNER**

Late Night With Seth Meyers

The Late Show With Stephen Colbert

Saturday Night Live


Outstanding Variety Sketch Series

At Home With Amy Sedaris

Documentary Now!

Drunk History

I Love You, America With Sarah Silverman

Saturday Night Live **WINNER**

Who Is America?


Director for a Variety Series

Alex Buono and Rhys Thomas Documentary Now!

Derek Waters, Drunk History

Paul Pennolino, Last Week Tonight With John Oliver

Jim Hoskinson, The Late Show With Stephen Colbert

Don Roy King, Saturday Night Live **WINNER**

Sacha Baron Cohen, Nathan Fielder, Daniel Gray Longino and Dan Mazer, Who Is America?


Outstanding Variety Talk Series

The Daily Show

Full Frontal

Jimmy Kimmel Live!

Last Week Tonight With John Oliver **WINNER**

The Late Late Show With James Corden

The Late Show With Stephen Colbert


Supporting Actor in a Drama Series

Jonathan Banks, Better Call Saul

Giancarlo Esposito, Better Call Saul

Alfie Allen, Game of Thrones

Nikolaj Coster-Waldau, Game of Thrones

Peter Dinklage, Game of Thrones **WINNER**

Michael Kelly, House of Cards

Chris Sullivan, This Is Us


Writing for a Drama Series

Jesse Armstrong, Succession **WINNER**

David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, Game of Thrones

Emerald Fennell, Killing Eve

Peter Gould and Thomas Schnauz, Better Call Saul

Jed Mercurio, Bodyguard

Bruce Miller and Kira Snyder, The Handmaid’s Tale


Supporting Actress in a Drama Series

Gwendoline Christie, Game of Thrones

Lena Headey, Game of Thrones

Sophie Turner, Game of Thrones

Maisie Williams, Game of Thrones

Fiona Shaw, Killing Eve

Julia Garner, Ozark **WINNER**


Lead Actor in a Drama Series

Jason Bateman, Ozark

Sterling K. Brown, This Is Us

Kit Harington, Game of Thrones

Bob Odenkirk, Better Call Saul

Billy Porter, Pose **WINNER**

Milo Ventimiglia, This Is Us


Directing for a Drama Series

Jason Bateman, Ozark **WINNER**

Lisa Brühlmann, Killing Eve

David Benioff and D.B. Weiss, Game of Thrones

Adam McKay, Succession

David Nutter, Game of Thrones

Daina Reid, The Handmaid’s Tale

Miguel Sapochnik, Game of Thrones


Lead Actress in a Drama Series

Emilia Clarke, Game of Thrones

Jodie Comer, Killing Eve **WINNER**

Viola Davis, How to Get Away with Murder

Laura Linney, Ozark

Mandy Moore, This Is Us

Sandra Oh, Killing Eve

Robin Wright, House of Cards


Outstanding Comedy Series


Fleabag **WINNER**

The Good Place

The Marvelous Mrs. Maisel

Russian Doll

Schitt’s Creek



Outstanding Drama Series

Better Call Saul


Game of Thrones **WINNER**

Killing Eve