Sterling K. Brown: If I Was An Oscar-Winning White Australian Woman, I Could Have Finished My Emmys Speech

September 26, 2017  |  

The Emmys have come and gone, statuettes given, speeches shared — well for the most part.

Sterling K Brown Emmys


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A big conversation on the night the Emmys aired (Sept. 17) was centered on the fact that after winning Best Actor in a Drama, This is Us star Sterling K. Brown’s lights and mic were cut. This was done in an attempt to get him off the stage and on with the show as he reportedly approached two minutes of speaking. However, Nicole Kidman, who won Best Actress in a Miniseries or Television Film, was allowed to speak for nearly three minutes (2 minutes and 45 seconds reportedly). To play devil’s advocate, she took time to speak on domestic violence, as her character in Big Little Lies, which is what she won for, was an abused housewife.

After it happened, Brown told Variety that “I knew it was a little long” when speaking on his speech. But while sitting with Stephen Colbert this week to promote a new season of This Is Us (premiering tonight!) and his upcoming film, Marshall, Brown had a thought or two on the discrepancies in the time for their speeches, as his was right after Kidman’s. One could say it likely had a lot to do with the fact that she’s a bigger star, an Oscar winner and what not. But could it also be privilege?

When Colbert told Brown he actually tried to intercede to get the actor’s speech lengthened after he was played off stage, Brown gave his two cents.

“It’s quite alright. Look man, not everybody can be pretty Australian white women who have won Oscars in the past,” he said as the audience grumbled. “Not that I’m blaming her. It’s not her fault. And you know, you gotta go to commercial break. It turned out to be more of a thing, but I got a chance to make the speech even longer because I got to finish backstage. It was perfect.”

Whatever the reason for them leaving him in the dark, the show had to go on, and so did Brown’s speech. In case you missed the rest of what he wanted to say backstage, he shouted out the writers, the show’s creator and his manager.

“I wanted to thank our writers,” Brown said. “A show doesn’t get seven acting nominations without some impeccable, beautiful, thoughtful writing. You guys are our life’s blood, so I want to thank you so much. To our producers and directors, in particular John Requa, Glenn Ficarra, and the crazy cool Ken Olin. I thank you for your guidance and friendship.”
“And I wanted to thank Dan Fogelman—he is the Hebrew hammer with which our house is built,” he continued. “He makes me laugh and cry in equal parts and keeps me coming back for more, and in his own little small special way, he’s not trying to make America great again, he’s trying to make it the best that it’s ever been, and I love him for taking me on this journey with him. I wanted to thank my manager of 17 years, Jennifer Wiley-Stockton. We’ve been doing this for a long time, and it feels like we’re just getting started. I can’t wait to see what’s next.”And, of course, Brown saved the best for last.

“And to my wife—they cut me off before I got to thank my wife, man! Ryan Michelle Bathe, you’re everything. You make my life worth living and you gave me two of the most beautiful things that God has ever put on this planet: my sons, Andrew Jason Sterling Brown, Amaré Michael Ryan Christian Brown, your daddy loves you with the strength of 1,000 suns. I’ll see you Monday after work. Love you. Thank you.”

Check out what he had to say about that speech and more during his chat with Colbert:

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