If you’re going to be an actor, you might as well start off big — at least that’s the case for Jovan Adepo. His first major role in a feature film was in Fences and it had him going toe to toe (literally) with Academy Award winner Denzel Washington and sharing poignant scenes with another Academy Award winner by the name of Viola Davis. And let’s not forget that Fences was based on one of the most celebrated plays of our time by the acclaimed August Wilson. Based on his performance, Adepo effortlessly delivered a stellar debut performance like it was old hat — and that sparked the start of a career that led to even more prestige projects that range from to a crazed bible-based allegorical drama to a World War II zombie gorefest.

Born in England and raised stateside, Adepo is from Nigerian descent and went to school for political science but came to Los Angeles to be a writer. However, he caught the acting bug and it worked in his favor. In addition to starring in Darren Aronofsky’s mother! and the J.J. Abrams-produced Overlord directed by Julius Avery, he appeared in Damon Lindelof’s The Leftovers. More recently he can be seen in the Facebook Watch series Sorry For Your Loss and will appear in Jack Ryan as well as Ava DuVernay’s Central Park 5 next year. He’s a busy guy, but luckily, he stopped by the New Hollywood Podcast to talk about the fast and prestigious evolution of his already-diverse career and how his roles reflect his identity.

Listen to the episode below.