Jay Pharoah showed his impersonation skills before hosting the 2016 American Music Awards. When he stopped by for an interview with on the red carpet of the November 20 event, he was asked to impersonate some famous names like , , and . And he definitely nailed it!
The “” alum began by mimicking Jay-Z. “Be ready for anything. You know if Kanye shows up, you know, just give him a hug,” he said, adding Jay-Z’s signature chuckle.
Right after that, the stand-up comedian impersonated Kanye, “The advice I would give you, Jay, is to follow your heart. Do whatever you want to do. Say whatever and tell everybody you’re amazing and you’re genius and they’re not on your level, though, because they’re really not though.”
He then continued to impersonate Denzel Washington, which he had no clue at first, but then he said, “Alright, okay. You gotta man up now, huh? You’re hosting an AMA. You gotta straight up. You gotta do what you do. You gotta make people laugh. You gotta be on point. You can’t start all on line because they gonna put that on Twitter.”
Not enough with his impersonations yet, he was asked if he’s working on anyone new [to impersonate]. Pharoah replied, “I got a couple of new one. You see my Leonardo DiCaprio. It’s on fleek!” He put Leo’s smile on his face and said, “Well, I wanna thank everybody for finally nominating me for The Academy Award, but what took so looong?” He screamed and then explained that Leo is a screamer because he screams in every movie.
Pharoah then teased what to expect when he took the stage as host alongside . “I keep it fun, but I’m going in. Anybody on my mind? You’re going to have to watch,” he said.
Meanwhile at the awards show, Gigi Hadid showed her best impersonation of Melania Trump. “I love my husband, President Barack Obama and our children, Sasha and Malia,” she said while mimicking Mrs. Trump’s accent, poking fun at her plagiarism of Michelle Obama’s speech.
Later, Pharoah joked that ‘s favorite artist is , because “I don’t know what color he is so I can’t deport him. He looks like Mowgli from ”.” He further added, ” ‘Uptown Funk’ used to be called ‘Uptown Trump’. I’m going to funk this country up bigly.”
— Jessica Goodman (@jessgood) 21 November 2016