Jharrel Jerome

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Jharrel Jerome
Jharrel Jerome (47948009887) (cropped).jpg
Jerome in May 2019
Born (1997-10-09) October 9, 1997 (age 25)
EducationFiorello H. LaGuardia High School[1]
Occupation(s)Actor, musician
Years active2016–present

Jharrel Jerome (born October 9, 1997)[2] is an American actor and rapper who is best known for appearing in Barry Jenkins's acclaimed drama film Moonlight (2016), and for portraying Korey Wise in Ava DuVernay's Netflix miniseries When They See Us (2019). He won the Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie and the Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Actor in a Movie/Miniseries.[3]

Early life and education[edit]

Jerome was born and raised in the Bronx, New York.[4][5] He is of Dominican descent and identifies as Afro-Latino.[5] He grew up in a close-knit family with parents who he described as "loving".[6] His mother suggested he pursue acting when he was in eighth grade, after which he joined the Riverdale Children's Theatre, a local youth theatre organization. He attended and graduated from Fiorello H. LaGuardia High School and commuted to Manhattan each day by train.[1][4]



Shortly after Jerome enrolled as an undergraduate at Ithaca College, he was cast in his first professional acting role in the 2016 independent film Moonlight, as young Kevin.[3] A.O. Scott wrote in The New York Times that he was "excellent" in the role.[7] Director Barry Jenkins said about Jerome, in an interview with the Los Angeles Times, "When you watch Jharrel in that movie, he's not a guy who's been over-rehearsing. That's a dude learning by doing. It's amazing."[3]

Since 2017, Jerome has appeared in the Audience series Mr. Mercedes.[5] He auditioned for the role of young Korey Wise in the 2019 Netflix miniseries When They See Us, based on the Central Park jogger case.[4] After his audition the series' director, Ava DuVernay, asked him to read the lines for adult Korey Wise, and he was subsequently cast in both roles.[4] Jerome grew close to Wise throughout filming, and said in a Los Angeles Times interview, "He's my brother now. I look up to him. I look up to his courage. He's taught me so much on how to be strong."[3]


Jharrel released "For Real" ft. Kemba on September 23, 2020.[8] The song was produced by songwriting duo Take a Daytrip and marked Jharrel's first single as a hip hop artist.[9] Upon release, Jharrel posted a message on his social media accounts that included: "Before my life changed, I had no idea I’d want to turn rap from a hobby to a career. But given my acting platform and these unbelievable blessings through the past few years, I decided to hone in on my music. Since 2016, I’ve been putting all the bank I’ve made from my films into studio sessions and recording equipment; trying to find my sound, my voice, my cadence, and my style. 4 years, 600 sessions and 80 songs later, I think I’ve found it."[10]



Year Title Role Notes Ref.
2016 Her Coloring Book Artist Short film
Wheels Narrator
Moonlight Teen Kevin Austin Film Critics Association Special Honorary Award for Best Ensemble
Gotham Special Jury Award – Ensemble Performance
Independent Spirit Robert Altman Award
MTV Movie Award for Best Kiss
Nominated–Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Cast in a Motion Picture
2018 Monster Osvaldo Cruz
First Match Omari Credited as Jharrel A. Jerome
2019 Selah and the Spades Maxxie [11]
Robu Rob Short film
2020 Concrete Cowboy Smush
2023 Spider-Man: Across the Spider-Verse Miles G. Morales / The Prowler (voice) [12]


Year Title Role Notes
2017 Tales Deacon Episode: "Children's Story"
2017–2019 Mr. Mercedes Jerome Robinson Main role
2019 When They See Us Korey Wise Lead role
Black Reel Award for Outstanding Actor, TV Movie or Limited Series
Critics' Choice Television Award for Best Actor in a Movie/Miniseries
NAACP Image Award for Outstanding Actor in a Television Movie, Limited-Series or Dramatic Special
Primetime Emmy Award for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie
Nominated—Satellite Award for Best Actor – Miniseries or Television Film
Nominated—Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by a Male Actor in a Miniseries or Television Movie
2019 Live in Front of a Studio Audience Jimmy Pearson Episode: "All in the Family and Good Times"[13]
2023 I'm a Virgo Cootie Lead role[14]
2023 Full Circle Upcoming miniseries


Jerome and his Moonlight co-star, Ashton Sanders, won the 2017 MTV Movie & TV Award for Best Kiss.[15]

Jerome won the 2019 Outstanding Lead Actor in a Limited Series or Movie category for his role in When They See Us.[16] He is the first Afro-Latino actor to win an Emmy for acting and the youngest winner in the category.[17] He also won in 2020 at the 10th Critics' Choice Television Awards for Best Actor in a Movie/Miniseries for When They See Us.

Jerome was placed on BET's "Future 40" list, which is a list of "40 of the most inspiring and innovative vanguards who are redefining what it means to be unapologetically young, gifted & black".[18] Time listed Jerome on their first annual TIME 100 Next list, which is a list of 100 rising stars.[19]


  1. ^ a b Venable, Malcolm (June 5, 2019). "When They See Us' Jharrel Jerome Is As Blown Away By His Performance As the Rest of Us". TV Guide. Retrieved June 16, 2019.
  2. ^ Jerome, Jharrel (October 9, 2020). "Birthday tweet". Twitter.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  3. ^ a b c d Villarreal, Yvonne. "After breaking out in 'Moonlight,' Jharrel Jerome channels the horrors of the Central Park Five case". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved June 3, 2019.
  4. ^ a b c d Herzog, Kenny. "How Moonlight's Jharrel Jerome Found Himself in Ava DuVernay's When They See Us". www.vulture.com. Retrieved June 3, 2019.
  5. ^ a b c Bergado, Gabe. "Jharrel Jerome Says Depicting One of the Central Park Five Was the Hardest Thing He's Ever Done". Teen Vogue. Retrieved June 3, 2019.
  6. ^ a b "'Moonlight's Jharrel Jerome Talks Playing A Queer Man As A Straight Latino". Vibe. February 16, 2017. Retrieved June 3, 2019.
  7. ^ Scott, A. O. (October 20, 2016). "'Moonlight': Is This the Year's Best Movie?". The New York Times. ISSN 0362-4331. Retrieved June 3, 2019.
  8. ^ "When They See Us and Moonlight actor Jharrel Jerome makes his musical debut with "For Real"". The FADER. Retrieved February 21, 2021.
  9. ^ "For Real (feat. Kemba)". Jaxsta. Retrieved October 26, 2020.
  10. ^ Valdivia, Pablo (September 23, 2020). "Jharrel Jerome Just Dropped A Single And It's Too Good Not To Share". BuzzFeed. Retrieved October 27, 2020.
  11. ^ "'Selah and the Spades': Film Review | Sundance 2019". The Hollywood Reporter. January 28, 2019. Retrieved February 21, 2021.
  12. ^ D'Alessandro, Anthony (March 17, 2023). "Jharrel Jerome To Star As Wrestler Anthony Robles Alongside Jennifer Lopez In 'Unstoppable' From Artists Equity And Amazon". Deadline Hollywood.
  13. ^ Schwartz, Ryan (December 12, 2019). "Live Good Times Cast: Viola Davis, Andre Braugher, Tiffany Haddish, Jharrel Jerome and 3 Others". TVLine.
  14. ^ Goldberg, Lesley (December 14, 2020). "Jharrel Jerome Series 'I'm a Virgo' From Boots Riley Lands at Amazon". The Hollywood Reporter. Retrieved May 16, 2022.
  15. ^ "Moonlight's Ashton Sanders & Jharrel Jerome Win Best Kiss". E! Online. May 7, 2017. Retrieved June 3, 2019.
  16. ^ Whitten, Sarah. "Emmys 2019: The complete list of nominees for the 71st annual TV awards show". www.cnbc.com. Retrieved July 16, 2019.
  17. ^ Ruiz-Grossman, Sarah (September 24, 2019). "Jharrel Jerome Makes History As First Afro-Latino To Win Emmy For Acting". HuffPost.
  18. ^ "BET DIGITAL CELEBRATES BLACK EXCELLENCE WITH NEW ORIGINAL EDITORIAL SERIES". Chicago Defender. February 7, 2020. Retrieved February 15, 2020.
  19. ^ "Camila Cabello and More Stars Among 2019 TIME 100 Next Honorees". E! Online. November 13, 2019. Retrieved February 15, 2020.

External links[edit]