Thursday night, two stars from the hit HBO series “Ballers” came to The Fillmore for a premiere party, showing “Ballers” and “Insecure” season kickoffs and following those with a TRAP Karaoke after-party.
Jazmyn Simon, who plays Julie Greane, wife of NFL star Charles Greane, and Donovan Carter, who plays football player Vernon Littlefield, flew in for the party after attending the 2017 ESPY Awards in Los Angeles.
Season 3 of “Ballers” begins at 10 p.m. Sunday, after the season premiere of “Game of Thrones.” Simon and Carter say that this season, questions will be answered and decisions will be made.
“This season I’m most looking forward to the fans to get to see the evolution of all these characters,” says Simon. “I mean, last season we kind of ended, and it just ended … So this year we see what happened to all the characters.”
“It’s a lot more busy I would say this season,” says Carter. “Not so much partying and stuff we did in the past. It’s a lot more business and just seeing that in the NFL, which you don’t get to see at home,” says Carter.
The “Ballers” actors also celebrated the show’s Emmy nomination for cinematography, which had been announced that morning. Carter says acting in “Ballers” is surreal to him: “The clothes, the cars, just kind of being exposed to stuff I never saw growing up. Just seeing stuff you know you hear about in rap songs and see in music videos, and you get to see it in your life now.”
Simon says her favorite part of playing Julie has been breaking down the stereotypes of being a professional athlete’s wife.
“When you think of a football player’s wife, you automatically think of something negative,” she says. “You think ‘wag’ or a ‘gold digger’ or ‘fake’ … And I think with Julie, and most athletes’ wives, she just loves her husband. And he just happens to play football. I get to bring a humanizing aspect to a character that would normally be negative.”
Of course, the best part of acting in “Ballers” for Simon was meeting her fiance, Dulé Hill, who plays Larry Siefert, general manager of the Miami Dolphins. “I love you, Dulé. Thank you ‘Ballers,’ for introducing us.”
Hill popped the question to Simon in April, and Simon says she couldn’t be any happier.
The second season of “Insecure” will also begin Sunday, airing at 10:30 p.m.