Known for his Tony, Golden Globe, and Emmy winning role as Belize in the Broadway production Angels in America and its acclaimed HBO miniseries adaptation, actor Jeffrey Wright joins the show and sips Uncle Nearest with Fred. They discuss the state of the world and how Wright is on a mission to tell true stories that can cut through fake news and misinformation.
- Uncle Nearest
Fred and Jeffrey talk about a wide variety of things, such as:
- The interview with Jeffrey took place in 2019 for the Amazon Prime show Bourbon Up.
- Wright talks first about how he became an investor in Uncle Nearest whiskey, which leads to a brief discussion of Nearest Green and the whitewashing of history.
- Jeffrey then tells a story about his role in the film “Basquiat,” which also starred Christopher Walken, David Bowie, Gary Oldman and others. Whiskey was involved.
- He then tells a story about his grandfather’s moonshining background.
- Wright was raised by his mother and aunt, and he talks about how his mom valued education. There also were a few butt-whippings.
- His memories about how he became an actor go back to seeing plays with his mom when he was a child.
- He loved playing Valentin Narcisse on HBO’s “Boardwalk Empire” in part because the character was armed with his mastery of language.
- Fred brings up fears of artificial intelligence and asks Jeffrey if that is reflected in “Westworld.” This leads him to talk about technology and the rise of misinformation. “I think we’re seeing the implications of this technology playing out in real time in our relationships with one another,” he says. “I don’t think we’re getting closer as a species.”
- Wright looks backward as a way of looking forward with a fascinating take on the notion of equality and what or who is truly American. Understanding the full story is the key, and it has the power to “carve through misinformation,” he says.
- Fred believes whiskey can be a common denominator for bringing people together.
- The conversation shifts back to whiskey, and Jeffrey talks about he himself started drinking whiskey. It started with Jack and ginger. “It’s America in that bottle. It’s beautiful.”