Showtime kicked off Emmy season with an event celebrating the cast and crew of their new series “The Chi” on Friday night. Gold Derby was on the red carpet at the Directors Guild of America Theater in Hollywood, CA, and snagged interviews with star Jason Mitchell, creator Lena Waithe, director Rick Famuyiwa, and Lil Rel Howery, who moderated a Q&A that also featured executive producer Common.
The ensemble drama examines life on the Southside of Chicago – like “The Wire” for the midwest. Mitchell plays Brandon Johnson, an aspiring chef whose younger brother (Jahking Guillory) is killed by a man (Ntare Guma Mbaho Mwine) avenging the death of his surrogate son. Famuyiwa helmed the pilot episode and served as an executive producer throughout the first season.
Waithe made Emmy history last year by becoming the first black woman to win Best Comedy Writing for “Master of None.” The Netflix show also brought her a Writer’s Guild Nomination this year for Best Comedy Series Writing. Can she add more trophies to her shelf for “The Chi”?
It certainly helps that reviews have been glowing. Ben Travers (Indiewire) praises its ability to acknowledge “the complexity of its city through the complexity of its characters.” Ashley Ray-Harris (The AV Club) calls it “the most realistic depiction of Chicago television has to offer right now.” And Maureen Ryan (Variety) believes the show “transforms the word ‘Chicago’ from something approaching an epithet into a three-dimensional place, a city in which a believable array of human beings live their lives and try to overcome the difficulties in their paths.”
Click on any name below to be taken to their full interview:
Jason Mitchell, who plays Brandon Johnson
Lena Waithe, creator and executive producer
Rick Famuyiwa, director and executive producer
Lil Rel Howery, event moderator
Be sure to make your Emmy predictions today so that Hollywood insiders can see how their TV shows and performers are faring in our odds. You can keep changing your predictions as often as you like until just before nominees are announced on July 12. And join in the fun debate over the 2018 Emmy taking place right now with Hollywood insiders in our television forums. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.