Watch Billy Porter's Emmys 2019 Acceptance Speech Video
Billy Porter Scores Historic Emmy Win: "The Category Is Love, Y'all, Love!"
Pose star Billy Porter is a history-making Emmy winner! The first-time Emmy nominee won outstanding lead actor in a drama series for his role as Pray Tell on FX's Pose, making him the first openly gay black man to win a trophy for best actor in Emmys history.
"The category is love, y'all, love," the Tony- and Grammy-winning actor said. "I am so overjoyed to have lived long enough to see this day. James Baldwin said, 'It took many years of vomiting up all the filth I'd been taught about myself, and half-believed, before I was able to walk on the earth as though I had a right to be here.' I have the right, you have the right, we all have the right!"
Porter went on to thank the other actors nominated in his category — Jason Bateman (Ozark), Sterling K. Brown (This Is Us), Kit Harington (Game of Thrones), Bob Odenkirk (Better Call Saul), and Milo Ventimiglia (This Is Us) — as well as thanked his family, the cast of Pose, and series creator Ryan Murphy. In a similar vein to the other speeches of the night, Porter ended his by sending out a rallying call for Hollywood to continue championing inclusive storytelling.
"We are the people that get to change the molecular structure of the hearts and minds of the people who live on this planet," he said. "Please don't ever stop doing that; please don't ever stop telling the truth."
Watch his moving speech ahead!