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Sterling K. Brown won the Emmy for best supporting actor in a limited series or television movie on Sunday night for his performance as lawyer Christopher Darden in The People v. O.J. Simpson.
Brown shed tears at the podium thanking friends and family from his hometown for his first Emmy win and also thanked the TV Academy, saying, “A lot of you may not have known who I was, but you checked the box anyway. And that makes me very, very happy.”
The actor gave a shout-out to co-star Sarah Paulson before leaving the stage: “I love you. Where you lead, I just try to support.”
Backstage, Brown said he had a new respect for the prosecution of the Simpson case. “The show and documentary had to show people felt one way — people on the side of the defense, they can see why people were appalled at the verdict and people on the side of the prosecution can see [why people on the other side felt the way they did],” he said, recalling a time in which he was pulled over “for being black” and being at the wrong place at the wrong time. “I didn’t think of Ron [Goldman] and Nicole [Brown Simpson]. To be on the side of two people who had their lives snuffed out, the prosecution was trying to speak for those who couldn’t speak for themselves.”
Brown also recalled a time during production of the series in which he reached out to Darden (and even attempted to friend him on Facebook). He found the number he thought was for Darden’s practice on Yelp and called at 10:30 at night, only to realize he had dialed his cellphone. After hanging up, Brown went to bed — only to wake up to a text from Darden. He explained who he was and that he was playing Darden on an FX series and wanted to break bread. Darden never responded.
Jimmy Kimmel hosted the 2016 Primetime Emmy Awards, airing live on ABC from the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.
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