Watch CBS News

'We Take On Huge Social Issues': Curtiss Cook On Showtime's 'The Chi'

(CBS Local)-- "The Chi" on Showtime features several great Black actors like Curtiss Cook.

Cook plays Chicago businessman Otis "Douda" Perry on the drama created by Lena Waithe. Season three of "The Chi" recently returned to Showtime and the actor is excited for people to check out the show during a critical time for our country.

"It's really amazing how sometimes you do things way before, not even knowing what the future is going to bring. The fact that The Chi is a show about community, coming together and sticking up for yourselves without the police being involved," said Cook in an interview with CBS Local's DJ Sixsmith. "That's where our country is kind of at today. It's amazing the foresight that Lena [Waithe] and Showtime had. It was amazing with the new folks coming in and the energy that was there. I had a great time this season.

One of Cook's favorite things about his character Douda is how multidimensional he is. In season two, Cook focused on portraying a businessman and the head of the 63rd Street Mob, but this year he was thrown another wrinkle with Douda's political aspirations.

"This year they have him [Douda] running for mayor of Chicago," said Cook. "So I have to be the businessman, gangster and then I have to throw in a politician with all of that. It's an actor's dream to be able to try that trifecta and bring it all together. I'm bringing it in a way that is realistic and not overly played. I hope I pulled it off, I did my best to pull it off. I did a lot of research and I had a great time doing it."

While "The Chi" has its funny and lighter moments, the Showtime drama spends a lot of time on the themes of race, family, class and death.

"It's heavy man. There's a lot of pain going on and we take on huge social issues," said Cook. "With Keisha missing, it's beautiful to see how this community rallies together for a Black girl, who have been ignored a lot in real time. The unpacking of how art imitates life and how we really need to take time. Sometimes I feel what television and movies do is they show the stuff that is happening every day, but as we're living it we are not really experiencing it. We're not really going through it because we're trying to get to the next day. Sometimes when we're able to sit back and watch it, then we're able to reflect on our own personal lives."

"The Chi" airs Sundays at 9pm EST/PST on Showtime and the full series is streaming now on the Showtime app.

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.