Niecy Nash on the women of ‘Claws’ and the harrowing true story of ‘When They See Us’ [EXCLUSIVE VIDEO INTERVIEW]

“Typically, you see this sort of behavior with men leading the charge,” admits Niecy Nash about “Claws,” the TNT drama series about five Florida manicurists (Nash, Carrie Preston, Judy Reyes, Karrueche Tran, and Jenn Lyon) who turn to a life of crime. “It’s delicious to have five badass women show up to the party and say, invite us.” Watch our exclusive video interview with Nash above.

SEE Emmys 2019 exclusive: TBS and TNT categories for ‘I Am the Night,’ ‘Full Frontal with Samantha Bee,’ ‘The Last O.G.’ and more

Given how outlandish the series can be at times, Nash believes this crime series belongs “in a comedy category. You’ve got strippers at a funeral. You’ve got a forced Russian wedding. You’ve got an operatic water ballet. You have moments where we break out into song and dance.” She credits her costars for making it all work. They’re “very committed to the task of making these characters seem very real and very grounded in a world where we have a lot of surreal moments.”

This year Nash also appears in Ava DuVernay‘s limited series “When They See Us,” which premieres on Netflix on May 31. It recounts the harrowing true story of four African-American teenagers and one Hispanic teen — later known as the Central Park Five — who were wrongfully convicted of raping a white jogger in Central Park in 1989. They were released from prison in 2002 when the actual perpetrator came forward and their sentences were vacated. Nash plays Delores Wise, mother of Korey Wise, one of the five persecuted youths.

SEE ‘When They See Us’ trailer lets us see Jharrel Jerome, Vera Farmiga and, yes, Felicity Huffman in true-crime drama [WATCH]

Because the real men (Wise, Antron McCray, Yusef Salaam, Raymond Santana and Kevin Richardson) and their families were often on set, “you wanted to make sure you handled this material with such care,” Nash reveals, “because it’s so delicate.” But she felt she got it right after Korey watched all four episodes and told her, “That’s my mom.” That “meant the world to me.”

Nash previously earned Emmy nominations for Best Comedy Supporting Actress for “Getting On” in 2015 and 2016. Before that she won a Daytime Emmy for “Clean House” (Best Special Class Program in 2010), and she competed three additional times for that series (Best Special Class Program in 2009, Best Lifestyle Program in 2009 and 2010).

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