Asante Blackk guided Shadow And Act through one of the toughest scenes in the first episode of Ava DuVernay’s Netflix miniseries When They See Us in our latest “Rewind The Scene” installment.
The scene Blackk provides commentary for is the first scene in which Kevin Richardson (Blackk), Antron McCray (Caleel Harris), Yusef Salaam (Ethan Herisse) and Raymond Santana Jr. (Marquis Rodriguez) finally meet in the same room at the police station. Until then, they had all been interrogated separately by police officers. Once they’re all in the same room, they realize that there’s more to their predicament than they thought.
“While they’re in this room with each other, [they] have the preconceived notion that one of these guys did it, you know? They don’t know. They just know that they didn’t do it. But until the end of this scene, they’re literally thinking, ‘Oh, so I’m in the room with a rapist right now, with somebody that assaults people.’ It’s just horrible. It’s horrible,” he said. He called the ending of the scene, in which the boys do realize that they have all been forced to turn on each other, “powerful.”
“These kids have to piece together that they were forced to lie on each other by these people in power,” he said, adding that the boys showed more courage admitting their wrongdoings to each other than the criminal system did when they tried to create a case against them.
Blackk called Harris, Herisse, Rodriguez, and Jharrel Jerome, who played Korey Wise, his “brothers for life,” and extended the familial bond to the real-life Exonerated Five. “They’re so, so strong. They’re like uncles,” he said. “They’re like brothers to us now. The strongest men that I know.”
Watch the full video below:
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