This year alone, John David Washington had a full slate of films including Reinaldo Marcus Green’s Monsters and Men, where he played a conflicted police officer as well as the Anthony Mandler-directed drama Monster based on the novel by Walter Dean Myers. He also appears in Robert Redford’s (supposed) last acting hurrah The Old Man & the Gun and also has a role in HBO’s Ballers. And last — but certainly not least — he steps into the lead as the real-life Ron Stallworth in Spike Lee’s BlacKkKlansman. The man has been busy. He deserves a vacation.

But before taking that vacation, Washington stopped by the New Hollywood Podcast to talk about Monsters and Men, Monsters and BlacKkKlansman and how they tackle issues that have been significant for decades within the black community.

We then switched gears as he joked about his “benchwarming” days in the NFL (his words, not ours), his road to acting, and one question he doesn’t like being asked in interviews (I think you can take a wild guess at what that is). We also spend a good chunk of time talking about one of his favorite TV shows which involves a Manolo Blahnik-loving sex columnist and her three friends living their fabulous lives in Manhattan. Needless to say, we had a lot to discuss — and laugh about.

Listen to the episode below.