(NEW YORK) — Brian Tyree Henry is digging deep in his latest role. In Steve McQueen‘s heist-thriller Widows, Henry plays Jamal, a local crime boss turned Chicago politician who’s on a mission to get his money back.
While Henry’s character is obviously flawed, the Atlanta actor tells ABC Radio that he surprisingly understands Jamal’s perspective.
“I have a lot of heart for Jamal,” Henry says. “I don’t want to say I felt bad for him. But, in an eerie way I really truly understood him. I understood exactly what he wanted, what he saw. And I just wanted to make sure that it was enacted the way it needed to be.”
He continues, “Now, I may do some sketchy stuff… It may not be couth… But like, I think that that’s the fun of discovering characters like that.”
In the film, Jamal is determined to get the $2 million dollars that was stolen from him by Davis’ husband who was killed in a heist-gone-wrong. Henry says because of it, Jamal must now navigate between two very different worlds.
“Because here you have Viola Davis character, who’s a sister… but living in the penthouse over here. But you ain’t thinking about me, down here,” he explains. “However, your husband stole from me. So now I’ve got to come to your penthouse and get what I want.”
Henry continues, “So now our worlds are colliding when you didn’t even want them to, or even know if they could. So, I think that that’s a constant thing that Jamal is going through in this movie is, like trying to find a way to dip in and out of these worlds and make them his.”
Widows, also starring Liam Neeson and Daniel Kaluuya, is now in theaters.
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