Sterling K. Brown’s Emmys Speech Was Cut Short & People Are Mad As Hell

For the first time in 19 years, a black actor won the Outstanding Lead Actor Emmy in a drama series.

Sterling K. Brown‘s historic win, for his portrayal as Randall on This Is Us, made him the first black man to do so since Andre Braugher in 1998, yet for some reason the actor had his acceptance speech cut short.

Holding his Emmy, Brown shouted out to previous fictional characters whose actors has won the award: Walter White (Bryan Cranston), Dick Whitman (Jon Hamm) and Bragher’s Detective Frank Pembleton.

“This one right here, when I think about it, like—Walter White held this joint?! Dick Whitman held this joint?! I may have lost some of y’all, but you know. Google it. And 19 years ago, Detective Frank Pembleton won this joint.”

The actor had just finished thanking his costars – “the best white TV family that a brother has ever had” – when the awards show began playing him off. Brown pressed on with his speech, but was unable to finish when his mic was cut and the cameras panned.

People were absolutely livid, particularly when other Emmy award winners were given significantly more time.

Neither the Emmys or CBS, which aired the awards show this year (it rotates between the four major US networks) have yet to comment on the backlash.

But at least Brown got to finish his speech. “You know what, I wouldn’t mind finishing,” he said when he got backstage. He praised the writers and producers of This Is Us before turning to his wife (and new co-star) Ryan Michelle Bathe.


“Ryan Michelle Bathe, you are 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 Stirling Brown, Amaré Michael Ryan Christian Brown, your daddy loves you with the strength of a thousand suns. I’ll see you Monday after work.”

Cheeky lil’ backstory: Brown shared this video of his sons melting down before their parents left for the Emmys, and it is EXTREMELY cute.

Here’s the full (remainder) of his speech.