Best Actor in a Television Series – Comedy or Musical

  • Best Actor in a Television Series – Comedy or Musical

    BEST ACTOR ‑ TV SERIES, MUSICAL OR COMEDY

     

    AWARD 1

    BEST PERFORMANCE BY AN ACTOR IN A TV SERIES ‑ MUSICAL OR COMEDY

     

    RAMY YOUSSEF ‑ “RAMY”

    RAMY YOUSSEF:  Thank you so much.  Wow.  Yes.  So I would like to thank my God, *Allahu Akbar.  Thank you, God.  This is thanks to God and Hulu.  And Hulu, you guys, look, I know you guys haven’t seen my show.

    (Laughter.)

    Everyone’s like, “Is this an editor?”

    (Laughter.)

    We made a very specific show about an Arab Muslim family living in New Jersey.  And this means a lot to be recognized on this level, so I do want to thank everyone who’s involved:  My co‑creators, producers, my family, my mom and dad.  This means ‑‑

    My mom also was rooting for Michael Douglas, so ‑‑ Egyptians love Michael Douglas.  I don’t know if you know this.

    But this means a lot.  Thank you, HFPA.  Thank you very much.  Appreciate it.  Thank you.

    –BACKSTAGE INTERVIEW–

    RAMY YOUSSEF: What’s up, guys. How’s it going? This is some crazy shit. This is very exciting and very unexpected and really just thankful to Hulu, people who made this show happen. Do you guys have questions?

    QUESTION: Obviously, I think you talked a bit about a bit of a symbolism of winning this award because what your show is, your background, your history, the acceptance, the inclusiveness of this. Can you talk about that.

    RAMY YOUSEFF: Yeah. I mean, I think to — this show is called Ramy, and this is a really — part of why Ramy picked that is because we didn’t want to call it Muslims. We didn’t want to call it something that would blanket a group of a billion people. It’s really a specific story. It’s one Egyptian family in North Jersey, and so for something this specific in an industry where a lot of networks feel like, oh, we need something that we can sell toothpaste that everyone would relate to, I think getting something like this can show you can really relate to people with something that feels really granular. It symbolically hopefully allows people to make more stories, more of a story line, a woman who wears a head scarf who is Muslim. Because I think when you watch our show, you see, I see his perspective not just hers. So it’s not just one show for one group. It’s really about the type of stories and the way they are told. Thanks, man. Anybody else?

    QUESTION: Hi. I’m Natasha from Germany.

    RAMY YOUSEFF: Hey.

    QUESTION: Hearing your name in that group with Tom Hanks and Ellen DeGeneres and all of these types of people, how did it feel to hear your name right then and there?

    RAMY YOUSEFF: I was just happy they pronounced it right. I was, like, is Jennifer Aniston going to be able to pronounce his name? She did it, or maybe it was Reese. It’s all a blur. Really cool. Just really amazing, again, for the show of this size to be recognized that way and very humbling. Yeah, I’m just very thankful. Yeah.

    QUESTION: I just want to ask how much of your story did you put in the show? How much of it is based on your experiences, and did you have any hesitation in putting some of it?

    RAMY YOUSEFF: Yeah. A lot of the show are things I could have done in real life. I tried to manage a version of myself where I didn’t have art to express myself or I didn’t have a family who talked as openly as it was, and I wanted to zoom in on what it would look like and feel a little more raw and just focus on the problems of this family and this character as opposed to — I think a lot of times there’s a tendency to make a movie of the people you don’t know and you want to make us look good. Wow, 1 people don’t know Muslims so let’s make them look good. For me, I really wanted to leave without problems, and I wanted to leave with things that people would connect on a human level with. So I took things that I struggled with, took them a little further than what I struggled with them and turned that into something that hopefully would just make people seem a little less lonely. Yeah.

    QUESTION: What made you — congratulations.

    RAMY YOUSEFF: Thank you.

    QUESTION: What made you give a shout-out to God or Ricky? Was it you were going to say that anyway or…

    RAMY YOUSEFF: I was going to say it anyway. I’m very thankful to God and my show is about someone who believes in their faith. So I naturally don’t always feel like I’m on the same page with the comedic style of Ricky Gervais on that subject, although the Epstein thing was really funny. But yeah, that was something that is sincere. It means a lot to me. It’s part of the DNA of the show. When people see the show, I think they will see that, too. Yeah. Thank you, guys, I appreciate it.

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