Snowfall's Damson Idris Recalls John Singleton Taking Him to South Central, 'If You Survive, You've Got the Role'
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Snowfall’s Damson Idris Recalls John Singleton Taking Him to South Central, ‘If You Survive, You’ve Got the Role’

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The television drama, Snowfall, is entering its last season. The series focuses on the drug trade during the crack era surrounding a character named Franklin, played by British actor, Damson Idris. He explained to talk show host, Drew Barrymore, the last process he had to take part in to secure his role in the FX drama.

Idris has been gaining critical acclaim for his performance as a young hustler moving “weight” throughout Los Angeles during the 1980s, at the start of the crack era. The series was reportedly inspired by the real-life experiences of the show’s co-creator, the late John Singleton.

Idris told Barrymore the last test he had to face was going to the neighborhood of South Central Los Angeles to experience the environment of the character he was hoping to play. He was told he needed to walk around that part of town, which is known for the dangers of street life. But, not only was he to take a stroll in the hood, but he had to do it in “character.” He couldn’t be Damson, he had to do so as Franklin. He also spoke about Singleton’s mother immediately recognizing that he was definitely not from the neighborhood.

“By audition number eight, Singleton took me to South Central, opened the car door, and said, ‘If you survive, you’ve got the role,’ Idris said. “And it really was an experience. I was walking around South Central, I had to stay in character, so I wasn’t allowed to be British,” Idris, 31, recalled with a laugh. “And, I said to his mother, ‘Oh, how lovely your hair looks today. I’m just going to go and put this in a bin,’ and she goes, ‘John, he ain’t from here, huh?’ Nearly lost the part. But hey, six seasons later, here we are.”

Snowfall, which premiereded in 2017, is currently airing its final season. You can catch it every Wednesday on FX and also view it on Hulu.

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